The Judges Have Ruled: Mock Trail Wins States

Ethan Bachand ‘18
EE Co-Managing Editor

Mock Trial celebrates their March 14th win at the Connecticut Supreme Court.

On March 14th, the Mock Trial team won the state championship by defeating rivals Weston at the Connecticut Supreme Court. The team will now travel to Reno, Nevada in order to compete in the national competition.

This adds on to what is already an incredible run from the team under coach Eric August. Over the past six years, the team has brought home four state championship. All of which have come in back to back years: first in 2013 and 2014, then 2017 and 2018.

Yet this year has proven to be something special, with Mr. August saying that “By far, collectively, the most talented team I have ever had. Our motto this year was this idea of ‘Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard’. The reason behind that was because I recognized how much talent we had and I wanted to make sure they still worked hard, and that being said they did. Not only were they just talented, they didn’t rest on their talent alone. They worked their butts off to get to where they were.”

Yet it was a difficult road to reclaim their title this year. As noted by senior Gabi Kwiatowski, the deck was stacked against them. “The path to the state championship was definitely no easy one,” she said, “especially considering with each time we advanced we kept on getting the prosecution for a case with a clear bias for the defense.”

At the end of the day, the team still was able to come out on top while also taking home the award for “Best Mocker”, which is annually given to the best student in the final round. This year, junior Daniella Chuka took home the award. Speaking on what that meant to her, Chuka said “ I didn’t expect it at all but it validated all the hard work and hours I put into this case. It felt incredible, but it was really just the cherry on top. The team winning the championships was definitely the bigger victory.”

As with every great high school team, there will always be seniors that graduate. Gabi, who is also one of the teams leaders this year, said about here experience that “Doing Mock Trial has obviously combat-trained me for public speaking, but other than that it taught all of us really how to work as a team to tackle a case that truly seems impossible at the beginning … Having the opportunity to lead a group of kids not just invested in the program for themselves, but for the whole team is nothing like I could have ever imagined. Working with them and winning is something that I’m thankful for everyday.”

With their success now comes an even more difficult challenge: Nationals. Yet if they go forward with the same hardwork and dedication that brought them home a state championship, there is no telling what they can do.

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