April 2, 2014
A McGeorge team battled to the finals of the Eighth National Ethics Trial Competition on the weekend of March 20-22, 2014, before falling to Loyola University Chicago in the title match.
Tiffany Wynn, Dayla Go, James Bradford and Tashayla Billington defeated perennial nation powerhouse Stetson in the semifinals to advance to the finals against Loyola, which had defeated two-time NETC champion Chicago-Kent in the semifinal round. Alan Donato, '09, and Jeff Schaff, '09, coached the McGeorge team.
Individual awards went to Kathleen Murphy, Loyola, Top Advocate Final Rounds, and Michael Zhang, Chicago-Kent, Top Advocate, Preliminary Rounds. Thomas Jefferson won the Most Professional Team Award.
This year's 18-team field also included teams from American, Buffalo, Catholic, Colorado, Creighton, Fordham, Georgetown, Houston, Roger Williams, South Dakota, South Texas, Texas, and UC Hastings.
Judge William Shubb, retired chief judge, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California, Judge Barbara Kronlund, '89, San Joaquin County Superior Court, Heather Williams, Federal Defender, Eastern District, Dominique Pollara, president, ABOTA Sacramento Chapter, and attorney and co-sponsor Steve Block, '78, formed a star-studded panel judging the final round.
"We owe much thanks to the Sacramento legal community for their support in running this competition that receives rave reviews from participants each year," Professor Jay Leach, NETC director said. "In the various rounds, we had more than 100 individuals act as judge evaluators. These included federal judges and magistrates, Superior Court judges, U.S. attorneys, district attorneys, public defenders and many, many faithful alumni."
McGeorge hosts the national mock trial tournament each year at the Robert T. Matsui U.S. Courthouse in downtown Sacramento thanks to the support of key sponsors. These include: Bob Buccola, '83, Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood Campora LLP; Morrison England, '83, chief judge, Eastern District; Porter Scott APC; Steve Block '78 and Teri Block, '98; ABOTA Sacramento Chapter; Anthony M. Kennedy Inn of Court; and the ABA Section of Litigation.