Eastern Kentucky University’s Mock Trial Team continued its historic season by finishing first at the American Mock Trial Association (AMTA) Regional Tournament held Feb. 26-28 in Louisville, Kentucky.
EKU’s first-place squad split first-round ballots against Xavier University before defeating another Xavier team in the second round, followed by victories against the University of Louisville and the University of Cincinnati in the final two rounds.
A total of 192 teams nationwide (approximately the top third of teams) qualify for AMTA’s first level of nationals, the Opening Round Championships (ORC). EKU will now move on to the AMTA ORC in Memphis, Tennessee, hosted by Rhodes College March 18-20. The top six of 24 teams in the Memphis ORC will advance to AMTA’s National Championship Tournament in Greenville, South Carolina, in mid-April.
Three EKU competitors earned recognition for their individual performances in the tournament. Allie Maples, a junior political science major from Mount Sterling, won an Outstanding Attorney Award as the top-ranked attorney in the tournament, earning a double award for her work on both the prosecution and defense sides of the case. Matthew Boggs, a senior political science and history double major from Whitesburg, also won an Outstanding Attorney Award. Anthony Sean Potter, also a senior political science major from Whitesburg, garnered an Outstanding Witness Award for his portrayal of the defendant in the case.
Other members of EKU’s first-place team included Ryan Wiggins, a freshman political science major from Georgetown; Melissa Mahan, a junior anthropology major from Bloomington, Illinois; and Laura Jackson, a sophomore political science major from Artemus. Maples, Boggs and Jackson are members of EKU Honors.
EKU’s second team also performed admirably at the tournament, defeating Samford University and splitting ballots with the University of Louisville before falling to the third- and fourth-place teams in the tournament, Indiana University and Xavier University, in the final two rounds. Members of EKU’s second team were Mackenzie DeSpain, Erica Madden, Caridad Echevarria, Chiani Murray, Alicia Gilbert, April Morse, Sarah Lindley, Sophia Chan and Peyton Ratliff.
The EKU Mock Trial program is sponsored by EKU University Programs. Faculty and staff assisting with the program include Tom Parker, Lynnette Noblitt, Brandon Williams, Kristeena Johnson and Dean Sara Zeigler.