24 volumes of power rankings means that we’ve been quietly judging battlers for two years now, and that’s truly something to celebrate. As a special little throwback, enjoy some Then And Now style visits down memory lane to Vol. 1 of the rankings, published back in April 2016.

(Editor’s Note: Updated New York rankings were not available as of press time – given that their last show featured the semifinals and finals of their winter tournament as well as a title match, it’s safe to assume that there will be significant movement there when the updates come out. Stay tuned to www.roastmastersnyc.com for details)

1. Toby Muresianu 12-3-1
2. Leah Kayajanian 11-8-1
3. Pat Barker 14-5-2
4. Omid Singh 17-7
5. Doug Fager 10-6-1
6. Jeanne Whitney 7-3
7. Jeff Sewing 6-0-2
8. Jamar Neighbors 6-4
9. Alex Hooper 13-7
10. Nicole Becannon 8-4

Volume 1 of the Power Rankings featured Toby Muresianu ranked ninth, with a relatively unimpressive 4-3 record. Two years and zero losses later, he’s the top dog in the Belly Room. Leah Kayajanian, on the other hand, was ranked number one overall for the maiden voyage of the rankings, and after a losing streak sent her tumbling down towards #20, she’s rebounded with four straight wins and has ascended back to the #2 spot. Doug Fager (#14 two years ago) pulled off an epic closer complete with musical accompaniment against Alex Hooper and jumps to the number five spot as a result. Jeff Sewing has officially tied Albert Escobedo’s record for most battles without a loss (8) to start a career, as his win over Galina Rivina propelled him to the number 7 overall spot. Pretty good for a guy who was 26 some two years ago. Hooper (#2 in the first rankings) falls to 9 with the loss to Fager, while Nicole Becannon (not ranked – probably hadn’t even battled!) rounds out the top ten despite dropping out of the tournament after beating Tony Bartolone.

11. Bryan Vokey 7-2
12. Jay Light 14-12-1
13. Alex Duong 10-7
14. Keith Carey 14-15
15. Quentin Thomas 6-3
16. Mike Schmidt 6-2
17. Galina Rivina 7-4
18. Sarah Keller 6-2-2
19. Caesar Lizardo 8-4
20. Albert Escobedo 8-4

For anyone who doesn’t think that Roast Battle has created new top-tier competitors recently, consider this – HALF of this group was not included in the initial rankings post two years ago. Only Keith Carey (4), Jay Light (8), Quentin Thomas (22), Alex Duong (34), and Mike Schmidt (40) were on that report. As for this month, Vokey’s dominant quarterfinal tournament win over Katrina Davis moves him up to 11, while Jay Light tumbles a few spots following his loss to Leah Kayajanian in a Battle of the Year contender. Mike Schmidt, Galina Rivina, and Sarah Keller all fall a few spots following tournament losses, though all three put forth great efforts and perhaps deserved different results.

21. Stuart Thompson 6-5
22. Dan Nolan 10-11
23. Rena Hundert 3-2
24. Ramsey Badawi 5-3
25. Tony Bartolone 7-7
26. Isaac Hirsch 5-1
27. Jacob Trimmer 7-4
28. Brett Erickson 5-0
29. Nicole Aimee Schreiber 3-1
30. Katrina Davis 5-3

Lots of movement here – Rena Hundert (ranked 19 two years ago) falls to 23 after her tournament ouster at the hands of Jonathan Rowell. Ramsey Badawi was ranked 24 two years ago, and guess what? He still is today, following his tourney loss to Tony Bartolone (#23 in 2016), who jumps up to 25. Isaac Hirsch continued his dominant stretch with a fifth straight W and moves up to 26 as a result, while Brett Erickson also pulled off a five-match win streak and clocks in at 28. Rounding out the bracket is Katrina Davis, who jumps up a couple spots after splitting a win over Mike Schmidt and a loss to Bryan Vokey.

31. Armando Torres 4-1
32. John-Michael Bond 6-3
33. Joe Eurell 8-9-1
34. Hormoz Rashidi 5-5-1
35. Jonathan Rowell 4-4-1
36. Valerie Tosi 4-2
37. Guam Felix 7-5
38. April Lotshaw 4-2
39. Brian McDaniel 3-0
40. Brent Duncan 5-5

Ah, Volume 1. A simpler time, when a young and spry Guam Felix sported a 5-0 record and #16 ranking. What a time to be alive. Here in the future, Armando Torres saw his winning streak snapped by Zach Stein and falls to number 31 because of it. Jonathan Rowell pulled off two tournament wins in February and moves up 13 spots to 35, while Boston’s Valerie Tosi got revenge for the Patriots with a win over Philadelphia’s Lou Vahram.

41. Paige Wesley 4-4
42. Zach Stein 6-4
43. Alfred Konuwa 4-4-1
44. Movses Shakarian 4-3
45. Andrea Guzzetta 2-0
46. Lonnie Johnson 5-4
47. Heather Marulli 5-6
48. Greg Roque 4-3
49. Ashley Johnson 2-1
50. Rachel Mac 2-2-1

We close out the Top 50 with Paige Wesley falling to 41 after her loss to Isaac Hirsch, Zach Stein climbing to 42 after beating Armando Torres, Movses Shakarian resurfacing on the ranks following a win over Richelle Meiss, and everyone else standing around and watching (note: Greg Roque might not have been standing). Rachel Mac claims the 50 spot to close out the rankings – any guesses as to who the first #50 was two years ago? If you said Sarah Afkami (who debuted with a dominant win over Jil Chrissie and then never battled again), you are correct and also that’s kinda sad that you knew that.

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