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>  News Releases >   2002 >   February

Mock Trial Society wins national competition bid, only regional perfect individual score

Posted 02/22/02

The Dartmouth Mock Trial Society finished the winter competition season with its most successful performance to date. With numerous wins, individual awards, and team trophies, Dartmouth's four Mock Trial teams have built upon the victories of past years to reinforce Dartmouth's status among the nation's top Mock Trial programs.

Every year, the American Mock Trial Association distributes a case file to approximately 200 schools nationwide, which assemble nearly 400 teams to compete in one of 17 regional tournaments. The top teams from each tournament are sent to the National Intercollegiate Tournament in St. Paul, Minn., and the National Championship Tournament in Des Moines, Iowa. Competitions consist of four rounds with two judges each, for a total of eight potential "ballots" to win each tournament.

This year, Dartmouth sent two teams to the regional tournament in Rochester, N.Y., and two teams to Princeton, N.J. Both tournaments are known for tough competition, hosting such powerhouses as Columbia, Cornell, Yale, Boston University, and Georgetown, among others.

At the Rochester tournament on the first weekend of February, Dartmouth's Team White, consisting of attorneys Dave Seidman '04, Sean Miller '05, Jed Sorokin-Altmann '05, and witnesses Rebecca Aledort '04, Elsa Drews '04, Paul Mazzuca '04, Steve Haidar '05, and Sara Hudson '05 made a strong performance, garnering numerous individual citations and finishing with a record of 3 wins and 5 losses.

Dartmouth's Team Silver, with attorneys Stephanie Hogan '02, Jeremy Presser '04, Victoria Corder '05 and witnesses Matthew Levine '02, Chris Kunke '02, Dennis Recca '02, Terri-Anne Segovia '05, and Sara Schnitzer '05 finished in 2nd place in the tournament with a record of 7-1, losing only one ballot by 3 out of 140 points. In doing so, Team Silver also secured a bid to the National Championship Tournament in Des Moines.

Additionally, Presser received one of nine Outstanding Attorney awards, and Levine received one of nine Outstanding Witness awards. This year marks the third consecutive year that Levine has finished as the No. 1 witness in a regional tournament, being the only person to receive a perfect individual score.

Two weeks later at Princeton, Dartmouth's Team Green, which featured attorneys Cassie Welch '04, David Rhinesmith '05, Nick Feltham '05, Jonathan Tullis '05, and witnesses Vivian Mills '02, Julia Keane '04, Chip Rountree '05, and Diede van Lamoen '05 finished with a solid record of 4 wins and 4 losses, narrowly missing a bid to St. Paul. Rhinesmith, in his first year of competition, achieved honors as an Outstanding Attorney, taking home one of 11 awards.

Attorneys Tim Cahill '03, Gwen Carroll '04, Dan Preysman '04, and witnesses Jill Cusack '03, Henry Shi '03, Alexa Hansen '04, Brian Pingree '04, and Will Rack '04 of Dartmouth's Team Black made a formidable showing, capturing 7th place in the tournament with a record of 5 wins and 3 losses and bringing home a bid to St. Paul. Henry Shi won yet another piece of hardware for the Big Green: one of nine Outstanding Witness awards.

Since its inception in the 1996-97 academic year, Dartmouth's performance at regional tournaments has improved consistenly. Dartmouth's first year of competition resulted in a bid to the Gold Flight tournament. After a brief slump in 1997-98, Dartmouth went on to win a spot to the Silver Flight tournament in 1998-99, a bid to the Gold Flight tournament in 1999-2000, two bids to the Silver Flight tournament in 2000-01, and one bid each to the Silver and Gold tournaments this year in 2001-02. In addition, Dartmouth finished first in its division at last year's St. Paul tournament, earning another bid to Des Moines in 2000-01.

This year's National Intercollegiate tournament in St. Paul is scheduled for the weekend of March 15. The National Championship tournament, in Des Moines, will be held the weekend of April 5. Teams Black and Silver will continue to prepare through the end of the term in preparation for these competitions.

Dartmouth's Mock Trial Society and its competition teams are student-led and student-directed.

The Dartmouth Mock Trial society would like to thank its faculty advisor Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, as well as Carey Heckman, Bob Donin, and Weyman Lundquist '52 for their support and advice. The Dartmouth Mock Trial Society is grateful for the continued financial support of the Committee on Student Organizations and the Student Activities Office.

Dartmouth has television (satellite uplink) and radio (ISDN) studios available for domestic and international live and taped interviews. For more information, call 603-646-3661 or see our Radio, Television capability webpage.

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