Feb. 18, 2004

Contact: Ryan Faulconer, KU Mock Trial, (719) 661-0819.

KU Mock Trial team receives two national bids

LAWRENCE -- The University of Kansas Mock Trial team, comprising two sub-teams, received two bids to national tournaments for the first time in KU Mock Trial history.

The KU Mock Trial team is divided into two teams, the experienced team and the novice team, 864 and 865, respectively. At the regional tournament in Topeka on Feb. 6 and 7, team 864's 7-1 record earned a first-place finish and a bid to the Gold Flight Nationals April 2-4 in Des Moines, Iowa. Team 865 went 6-2, placing third, and received a bid to the Silver Flight Nationals March 5-7 in St. Petersburg, Fla.

If team 865 places among the top four in St. Petersburg, its members will join team 864 at the Gold Flight Nationals, Mock Trial President Ryan Faulconer said.

In a mock trial competition, undergraduates compete in a three-hour mini-trial, playing the roles of attorneys and witnesses. Points are awarded based on the students' performances of their roles. The case being tried is determined at the start of each season. Teams receive the facts, evidence and witness testimony from which they construct their arguments. They prepare opening statements, closing statements, and direct and cross examinations of witnesses.

The lawyers at the mock trials require a combination of the facts and evidence to be presented, a firm grasp of the law as it applies to the case and a strong understanding of trial procedure. Witnesses must know the facts of the case and be able to answer questions naturally despite their frequent rehearsals. The "judges" and "jury" score the team participants on their performance. The opening statement, closing statement, and direct and cross examinations are all scored. The actual verdict of the trial is not decided and does not affect the scoring.

The overall record of team 864 is 32-7-1 while team 865 is 15-8-1.

Faulconer said the next few months before the tournaments will be spent preparing and improving through on-campus scrimmages. He said both teams have a good shot for high finishes at the national tournaments.

The KU Mock Trial team is sponsored by the KU School of Law, KU Student Senate and the Kansas Trial Lawyers Association.

The Mock Trial team coach, captains and competing members, including possible season individual awards, are listed below by hometown:

FINNEY COUNTY
From Garden City
Andrew Payne, freshman in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, son of Ann Payne; Garden City High School graduate; team 864.

FRANKLIN COUNTY
From Ottawa
Amber Golden, freshman in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, daughter of Paul and Deborah Golden; Ottawa High School graduate; team 865.

JOHNSON COUNTY
From Olathe
Margaret Lubberts, freshman in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, daughter of Albert Lubberts; Olathe South High School graduate; team 865 captain, two outstanding attorney awards and two outstanding witness awards.
Shandy Soleimani, junior in political science, son of Sheila and Massoud Soleimani; Olathe South High School graduate; team 864 captain, outstanding attorney award.
Tai Vokins, sophomore in political science; Shawnee Mission South High School graduate; team 864, outstanding witness award.

From Overland Park
Mustafa Qadri, freshman in engineering, son of Shahid and Munazza Qadri; Shawnee Mission South High School graduate; team 865 captain.

From Shawnee
Danielle Davey, junior in psychology and political science, daughter of Vickie Miller; Shawnee Mission Northwest High School graduate; team 864 captain, vice president.
Angela Raab, freshman in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, daughter of Gil and Lil Carlon; Shawnee Mission Northwest High School graduate; team 865.
Chris Kaiser, senior in biology, son of John and Laura Kaiser; Shawnee Mission South High School graduate; team 864, four outstanding witness awards and an outstanding attorney award.

POTTAWATOMIE COUNTY
From Onaga
Shea Suther, junior in psychology, daughter of Steve and Anne Suther; Mt. St. Scholastica High School graduate; team 865.

COLORADO
From Colorado Springs
Ryan Faulconer, junior in political science, son of Forrest and Maria Faulconer; Cheyenne Mt. High School graduate; team 864 captain, four outstanding attorney awards and an outstanding witness award.

ILLINOIS
From Bethalto
Kaleigh Bassett, freshman in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, daughter of Lynn Bassett; Civic Memorial High School graduate; team 865.

OKLAHOMA
From Broken Arrow
Branden Bell, second-year law student; coach.

TEXAS
From Colleyville
Mike Minea, sophomore in computer engineering, son of Richard and Debra Minea; Grapevine Senior High School graduate; team 865.

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