Mock Trial team goes undefeated at regional competition, prepares for state


courtesy of Joanna Bu

Left to right: junior Ann Sullivan, senior Rebecca Grayzel-Ward, senior Reed Cooper, senior Mary Lauren Green, sophomore Anneke Buskes, junior Josh Pearson, senior Virginia Parkinson, and junior Joanna Bu gather for a picture after competing at the Mock Trial regional competition on Jan. 28, where they went undefeated.

Eric Maddigan, Staff Writer

On Jan. 28, the Mock Trial team participated in the Oxford regional competition at the Lafayette County Chancery Building and went undefeated, qualifying for the state competition.

The Mock Trial case for each year is released in October. Students must read the case, analyze the legal angles and witness statements, prepare to compete as an attorney or as a witness, and practice for the competitions.

Success for the team has been consistent, with attorneys and witnesses placing in the top ten in the state nearly every year.

“We started competing in Mock Trial in 2008, and at least one of our teams has advanced to the state competition each year,” Mock Trial coach Barbara Lowe said. “They have the ability to be seriously competitive at the state level.”

The event is mostly student-run, but also has the help of some local attorneys.

“I love the fact that Mock Trial is a student-driven competition. The students really take ownership from the beginning,” Lowe said. “They do have access to two local attorney-coaches. They offer advice on the legal angles of the case.”

Senior Rebecca Grayzel-Ward and junior Josh Pearson are co-captains of the Mock Trial team, which is composed of nine students.

“I love reading a new case and figuring out the best way to approach it. I enjoy the logical thinking,” Grayzel-Ward said.

The team is current preparing for the state competition, as it knows the opponents at the state-wide competition will be tougher.

“We’ve been meeting pretty much every week since October,” Pearson said. “We’ve been going over questions, opening and closing, objecting.”

The team is looking forward to the state competition, which takes place on March 3 and 4.

“The team has the potential to be very successful, we just advanced to state, winning both of our rounds with none of the six judges voting against us,” Grayzel-Ward said.

The team’s performance in the qualifying round has helped it recognize weaknesses and improve its scores for the next competition.

“The competition will be much harder because teams have a month between regionals and state to improve their performances,” Lowe said.

The team emphasized the importance of keeping the main goal in sight: a state championship.

“We just have to stay focused in order to do well,” Grayzel-Ward said.