Having lost the closest Montgomery Bell Academy Extemp Round Robin in history last year, Josh Wartel of Lake Braddock Secondary School (VA) left nothing to chance at this year’s event, achieving a seven rank triumph over Brian Anderson of LaRue County High School (KY) in this year’s tournament. Having led all ten rounds of last year’s competition before succombing in an Exhibition Round tiebreaker to three-time champion Lily Nellans, Wartel led nine of the ten rounds of this year’s competition, taking control of the tournament in the second round and never looking back. The title is Wartel’s first major championship and is his third consecutive victory at a prominent national circuit tournament. Wartel won Villiger for the second time in November and won both extemp competitions at George Mason last month. He will receive 150 National Points Race points for his win.
Anderson’s runner-up finish was the best performance by a Kentucky extemper at the Round Robin. His top five placing was also the first time that a Kentucky extemper had reached the Exhibition Round since 2008.
The top five competitors of the tournament were all from Southern states, creating the first all-Southern Exhibition Round in Round Robin history. In the Exhibition Round, adjudicated by the eleven competitors that did not place in the top five, Phoebe Lin of Plano West Senior High School (TX) took the title, becoming the first Texas extemper to do so since 2009. Lin took third in the general tournament, placing a mere one rank behind Anderson.
Overall, the tournament was very close with the second and fifth-highest placing extempers separated by only eight ranks. Noah Wexler of Nova Senior High School (FL) finished fourth, only two ranks behind Lin and a mere three ranks behind Anderson. Eitan Sapiro-Gheiler from Durham Academy (NC) took fifth, with five ranks separating him from Wexler.
National Points Race leader Justin Graham of Trinity Preparatory School (FL) took next out honors and will receive National Points Race points for his sixth place finish. Graham missed the Exhibition Round by seven ranks.
Here are the results of the 2015 Montgomery Bell Academy Extemp Round Robin:
Champion: Josh Wartel (Lake Braddock Secondary School, Virginia)
2nd: Brian Anderson (LaRue County High School, Kentucky)
3rd: Phoebe Lin (Plano West Senior High School, Texas)
4th: Noah Wexler (Nova Senior High School, Florida)
5th: Eitan Sapiro-Gheiler (Durham Academy, North Carolina)
6th: Justin Graham (Trinity Preparatory School, Florida)
Richard Holland Memorial Exhibition Round Champion: Phoebe Lin (Plano West Senior High School, Texas)