Dos Pueblos High School’s mock-trial team on Sunday earned a place in the finals of the Empire Mock Trial Association’s Empire City Invitational World Championship in New York City.
As Hurricane Sandy barreled north toward Manhattan, Sunday’s competition opened with the Chargers’ defense facing Tottenville High School of Huguenot, N.Y., on Staten Island. At the time, Dos Pueblos and Tottenville were the only teams with a 6-0 records. Because of the storm, the teams were down to two scorers in each round instead of three on the tournament’s the first day. Tottenville was stiff competition, but Dos Pueblos took both ballots, one by a sizable margin.
Sunday afternoon, the Chargers’ prosecution faced Bishop Lynch High School of Dallas. Again, Dos Pueblos took both ballots.
On Saturday, Dos Pueblos also swept the day’s competition.
At the awards ceremony Sunday evening, Madeline Matthys received a Best Attorney Award.
Next, the organizers announced the 10-team standings, with Dos Pueblos in first place and rival La Reina High School of Thousand Oaks in second. Dos Pueblos took all 10 ballots — apparently, a rare feat for the tournament. La Reina, which earlier this year topped the Chargers in the California Mock Trial Finals in Sacramento, lost two ballots in the course of the New York tournament.
The two teams must be at the Brooklyn courthouse by 8:30 a.m. Monday EST for the finals.
On the storm front, hotel management met with Dos Pueblos team officials Sunday night and said the hotel has generators in case the power goes out and enough food and linens for one week. The hotel is in a “B zone” for storm danger, which management assured us is a safe place to be — so safe that the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be setting up offices in one of the hotel’s ballrooms. As a result of the FEMA activity, the hotel will have a heavy presence of police and fire personnel.
Many of the other mock-trial teams are staying at the same hotel, so the kids are looking forward to some relaxation with their new friends after they finish Monday’s competition.
The Dos Pueblos team has plane reservations for Tuesday night, in case the airport reopens.
We are feeling the warmth from Santa Barbara, even as we feel the cold front moving in. Thanks so much for your support.
Click here for a related article from The Charger Account at Dos Pueblos High.
— Maureen Grattan is an attorney with Dorais, McFarland, Grattan & Polinsky in Santa Barbara and a Dos Pueblos High School mock-trial coach.