USC Mock Trial Team Sweeps Regionals

After finishing fourth in 2006, the team will advance to a nationwide competition in Florida.
By Peter Warren
The team will head to the AMTA National Championship Tournament in April.

Photo/Courtesy of Olu Orange
Students from USC’s Mock Trial Team won first, second, third and fifth places and were named tournament champions at the American Mock Trial Association’s Great Western Regional Tournament held Feb. 17-18 at USC.

The USC team in recent years has been among the top performers in the western region and finished the 2006 season with an overall national ranking of fourth out of 564 teams.

The sweep of the top places at the regional tournament earned USC two bids to the national finals and enables members to skip past two national qualifying events and advance directly to the AMTA National Championship Tournament, which will take place in St. Petersburg, Fla., April 13-15.

Olu Orange is the team’s head coach. Orange, an adjunct professor of political science at USC College, is a practicing criminal and civil rights attorney in West Los Angeles.

USC Mock Trial Team members who participated in the competition are (in alphabetical order):

Ashley Anderson, junior, business administration
Chris Bloom, junior, neuroscience
Tom Burke, junior, neuroscience
Marina Braverman, sophomore, communication, “All-Regional Witness”
Alex Clendennen, freshman, business administration
Andrea Contreras, junior, neuroscience
Mercedes Cook, sophomore, psychology
Gina Davidson, junior, psychology
Sharisse Deal, junior, communication
E.J. Dieckman, senior, broadcast journalism
Meredith Elkins, freshman, public relations
Tashiya Gunesekera, sophomore, English
Jeffrey Gurrola, sophomore, political science, “All-Regional Attorney”
Sarah Holl, senior, political science, “All-Regional Attorney”
Vassi Iliadis, freshman, comparative literature
Akhi Johnson, junior, “All-Regional Attorney” and “All-Regional Witness”
David Kass, junior, communication
Kilie Latendresse, senior, philosophy
Michael Maloney, junior, cinematic arts, “All-Regional Witness”
Lilyanne Ohanesian, senior, political science
Christina Paquette, sophomore, English
Faye Paul, senior, philosophy
Jaymes Sanford, senior, international relations
Mane Sardaryan, sophomore, philosophy
Jeffrey Skinner, sophomore, international relations, “All-Regional Witness”
MiRi Song, sophomore, philosophy
Katherine Tong, senior, political science major