On Friday, Feb. 28, KO’s Mock Trial team won their first round of the Civics First CT mock trial competition. The team has two separate groups representing both the plaintiff and defense sides of this year’s case. The plaintiff side won against Xavier High School by 12 points, and the defense beat Mark T. Sheehan High School by eight points. The team is coached by former Middle School English teacher Lynne Levine and attorney Melina Powell.
Due to COVID-19, the team only has one more set of trials. In a typical mock trial competition system, once a team wins, they continue competing until they lose. In this new system, however, KO will face more challenging competition because the team will be competing against other teams that have already won.
This year’s case centers around high-school athlete Mia Rapino who suffered a concussion during her soccer game. Her mother filed a lawsuit against the club team, its director, and Mia’s coach, claiming they were responsible for her injuries.
Through mock trial, team members develop various skills which benefit these students throughout their high school years. Mrs. Levine believes that individuals can increase their critical thinking and public speaking skills on a mock trial team. “[Senior Co-captain] Patrick Schwab, who acts as lawyer, has said it helps him to better analyze his literature and his English work since he’s learned to think deeply and find little details,” she said. “You have to enjoy detail. You can’t be a big-picture person and enjoy mock trial.”
Senior Co-captain and witness Caroline Boardman believes that team members have many individual strengths that support the group. The team is focused and shares similar goals, which adds to their team chemistry. “Our strengths as a team are that we are all very quick on our feet and know our case well,” she said. “This team has been so passionate and focused, and it is great to be practicing in person again.”
The Wyvern team as a whole is very experienced and has four seniors, including Patrick, Caroline, senior witness William Wells, and senior lawyer David Shi. Mrs. Levine believes that the seniors have genuinely shaped the team and have been a positive influence for the underclassmen members. Specifically, the team’s captains have been true leaders this year. “They have stepped up, and it’s been really good,” she said. “I’m very proud of them.”
The team has recently been announced as finalists following their competition on Friday, March 4. The defense side won against RHAM by 15 points and the plaintiff side won by a single point against Ridgefield Red. Their win is due to their continuous hard work during their weekly practices. The KO community offers congratulations to the Mock Trial Wyverns!