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Mock Trial Team Starts Season with Wins at UNH Tournament

November 11th, 2010 by 

Mock Trial

On Oct. 23 and 24, the Holy Cross Mock Trial team traveled to the University of New Hampshire Law School in Concord, N.H. to compete in the second annual Wildcat Mock Trial Tournament. Holy Cross sent two teams (the Red Team and the White Team) to the tournament, both coached by Holy Cross alumni Ed McDermott ’79 and Jim Healy ’80.  I was on the White Team. After months of training and two days of intense debate, the Mock Trial team returned with two team awards and three individual awards.

More than 180 students from 20 colleges and universities competed in Wildcat Tournament, which centered on a fictitious case created by the American Mock Trial Association (AMTA) and presented to teams earlier this semester. This year’s case involved a small child who died after swallowing toxic “Princess Beads” manufactured by a toy company called Happyland.

Each team prepared to argue the case for the defense and the plaintiff, with students filling the roles of both attorneys and witnesses for the trial. Each team tried the case four separate times, two times for the defense and two times for the plaintiff.  “Trying the case four times in two days is an intense experience because it forces you to internalize the information,” said Red Team captain Brendan Sullivan ’11. “We have a good time at these events and we really connect as a team. But it does require a lot of hard work.”

During closing ceremonies, which were held on the last day of the tournament, awards were given based on individual and team performance, as well as total score. The Red Team tied for second place for overall score and performance with Roger Williams University. The White Team was awarded the Spirit of AMTA award, which is given for outstanding sportsmanship and professional conduct. Three individual students also received awards for outstanding performances as lawyers and witnesses. Kelsey Smith ’13 received a witness award, while both Jeff Lord ’11 and Mike Whalen ’11 received awards for their roles as attorneys.

“The season is progressing much better than anticipated,” said coach Ed McDermott ‘79. “Students have been pleasingly energized early in the season and this has translated into a first and second place finish in two separate tournaments. Having said that, we have a long way to go in order to achieve our ultimate goal, which is a bid to the national AMTA tournament in March.”

With the season ahead of them, the Holy Cross teams will continue to meet and practice together, working toward the goal of qualifying for the national tournament. Last weekend the Red Team took first place in the Colgate Invitational; and this weekend the White Team will travel to Tufts University to participate in a tournament.

Red Team: Brendan Sullivan ’11 (captain), DJ Kernisant ’11 (captain), Mike Whalen ’11, Erica Rocha ‘11, Jeff Cameron ‘12, Peter Walsh ‘13, Stephanie Lindeberg ‘13, Sheila Coursey ’13.

White Team: Jeff Lord ’11 (captain), Jonathan Bopp ’11, Stacie Provencher ’12 (captain), Luiza Mouzinho ’12, Andrew Baccari ’13, Kelsey Smith ’13, Greg Totino ’14, Amanda Osowski ’14.

By Amanda Osowski ’14

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