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Members of Murrah Speech & Debate Team Win National Awards

August 31, 2019

Jeffrey Caliedo, Y'Sonnie Pressley, Evan Morrisey, and Maisie Brown
Celebrating their summer national speech and debate victories are (from left) Jeffrey Caliedo, Y'Sonnie Pressley, Evan Morrisey, and Maisie Brown.

The Mustang Speech & Debate team of Murrah High School brought home awards from two national tournaments held this summer. The four students who brought home the awards were rising seniors Jeffrey Caliedo, Evan Morrisey and Maisie Brown and rising junior Y'Sonnie Pressley.

Pressley reached the final round of Declamation at the National Catholic Forensic League (NCFL) Tournament in Milwaukee. She placed 5th overall out of 215 competitors, making her Murrah High School's first-ever national finalist. At the same tournament, Caliedo placed in the octofinal round of Dramatic Performance and finished in the top 48 out of 222 competitors.

At the National Speech & Debate Association's (NSDA) Tournament held in Dallas, Morrisey and Brown teamed up with debaters from Petal and Madison Central High Schools to represent Mississippi in the World Schools Debate competition. The event included 193 teams from 42 states and five foreign countries. With their teammates, the Murrah students reached the second elimination round, placing in the top 32 teams at the tournament. This was the first year that a Mississippi team reached elimination rounds in World Schools Debate.