The courtroom competition was fierce and the deliberations thoughtful, according to the esteemed judges of the 2013 Gordon D. Schaber Mock Trial and Moot Court Program. In the end, there could be only one winner and its name: Elk Grove High School.
West Campus High School earned top honors in the Moot Court competition while Rio Americano High School [Team 2] placed second in the Mock Trial competition and Bella Vista High School [Team 2] were runners-up in the Moot Court competition.
The Sacramento County Office of Education [SCOE], which coordinates the event, announced the winners at the GDS Awards Ceremony on March 4. Elk Grove High will advance to the California Mock Trial competition, which will be held in Riverside, March 22-24. California does not hold a statewide Moot Court competition.
Teams from 18 Sacramento County high schools, as well as 4 teams from El Dorado, Placer and Yolo counties, competed in the 34th annual event.
Volunteers from local law firms and other legal organizations served as scoring and presiding judges for the five-day event.
Here's what SCOE officials had to say about the event:
The Mock Trial competition simulates a trial-level proceeding in which students portray the roles of pre-trial counsel, prosecuting and defense attorneys, witnesses, court clerks, bailiffs, and jurors before a single presiding judge and two scoring judges, according to SCOE officials. It includes courtroom art and courtroom journalism competitions. The county Mock Trial winner advances to a statewide competition. The Moot Court competition is an appellate-level proceeding in which students prepare and argue a case before a panel of three judges that evaluates participants on the quality and persuasiveness of their legal reasoning and presentation, as well as their unscripted responses to spontaneous questions from the bench.
The California Mock Trial Competition is sponsored by the Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF), a non-profit, non-partisan, community-based organization dedicated to educating America's young people about the importance of civic participation in a democratic society.
Here are the stats from the night, courtesy of the SCOE:
Most Valuable Team Member:
- Elk Grove HS - Cassandra Marshall
- Laguna Creek HS - Emily Jones
- Monterey Trail HS - Gabriela Rosales
- Pleasant Grove HS - Carinn Candelaria
- Sheldon HS Team 1 - Andrea Delgadillo
- Sheldon HS Team 2 - Nina Henry
Outstanding Pre-Trial Motion Attorney for Defense: Edwyn Wong (Elk Grove HS)
Outstanding Pre-Trial Motion Attorney for Prosecution: Zane Grace (Elk Grove HS)
Outstanding Clerk (three-way tie): sharing the award is Dawna Green (Sheldon HS)
Outstanding Bailiff: Joshua Lourence (Elk Grove HS), Anthony Whaley (Sheldon HS)
Outstanding Atttorney: Miranda Drolet (Elk Grove HS), Maria Vidal (Laguna Creek HS), Luan Nguyen (Pleasant Grove HS)
Top Witness: Ciera Miller (Elk Grove HS), Nkechi Ikem (Elk Grove HS), Lauren Noonan (Laguna Creek HS), Mahima Ali (Monterey Trail HS), Kelly Ho (Monterey Trail HS), Cori Franco (Sheldon HS), Olivia Newell (Sheldon HS), Patt Collins (Sheldon HS)
Members of the Elk Grove High's team that took first place and advance to the statewide competition:
Naomi Alexander, Miranda Frolet, Jacob Fryer, Michael Gates, Zane Grace, Nkechi Ikem, Michael Joe, Ashley Kinyon, Joshua Lourence, Cassandra Marshall, Ciera Miller, Megan Pineda, James Revello, Carolyn Ross, Bianca Ventura and Edwun Wong
Elk Grove High's team is coached by Joe Campion, David Hill, Heather Partington, Dan Carroll and Jenni Harmon
Moot Court awards won by Elk Grove area students:
Outstanding Moot Court Speaker: Dunya Younis (Franklin HS)
Most Valuable Team Member(s):
- Franklin HS Team 1 - Paublo Rodas
- Franklin HS Team 2 - Angel Narayan
Team Sportsmanship Award: Franklin High School Team 2