Hamilton Mock Trial competed in the Regional American Mock Trial Association (AMTA) tournament at Pennsylvania State University from Feb. 3 to 5. This was the first of three AMTA elimination tournaments that aim to bring together the best teams from around the country.
Hamilton placed third out of 24 teams, earning it a spot to the next AMTA tournament, Opening Round Championship Series (ORCS) in Lancaster, Pa., March 17 to 19.
The other teams advancing from this regional competition (in order of rank) are: Fordham University: Rose Hill, Georgetown University, Dickinson College, Lafayette College, Patrick Henry College and the University of Pittsburgh.
Hamilton faced teams that it had not previously competed against including Carnegie Mellon University, St. Vincent College, the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Scranton. The team ended the weekend with a record of six wins, one loss and one tie.
Two team members received individual awards for their outstanding performances: Silvia Radulescu ’17 was commended for her role as a defense attorney and co-Captain Caroline Reppert ’17 was lauded for her roles as both the defendant and a plaintiff attorney.
Though the wins and personal awards were exciting for the team, many remarked that a more meaningful aspect of the tournament was alumni engagement. Maggie McGuire ’15 and Hunter Green ’16 attended to support the current competitors and offer constructive feedback after trials.
McGuire and Green, as well as Patrick Bedard ’14, also attended the team’s tournament the weekend before (Jan. 28-29) at Georgetown University. These former competitors prove that one of the most helpful aspects of Mock Trial is that it invites access to such a close-knit alumni network.
Another helpful aspect is getting to compete in different locales to learn small but important regional differences, such as preferred speed of speech, aggressiveness and charm. The increasingly challenging spring AMTA tournaments provide that perspective to team members because each tournament pulls together teams from a wider geographic range.
For example, at ORCS Hamilton will compete against teams from New York City, Washington, D.C., and New Jersey. If the Hamilton team places among the top six at ORCS, it will advance to the National AMTA competition at UCLA (April 21-23).
Other competing team members included: Co-Captain Andrew Fischer ’17, Ryan Bloom ’18, Conor O’Shea ’18, Rachel Dawson ’19, Samantha Gordon ’19 and Isabelle Mosbarger .