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Mock Trial won first and sixth place in Chicago last weekend. Lauren Eicher | Courtesy

The Hillsdale College mock trial team dom­i­nated its com­pe­tition in the Windy City last weekend, taking first and sixth at the Uni­versity of Illinois in the Chicago Illini Tour­nament. Team 1106 snagged its first trophy for 1st place this season with a perfect record of 8 wins and 0 losses.  Team 1107 scored an hon­orable mention, sliding into 6th place with a record of five wins, two losses, and one tie.

“We are in good spirits because the 5.5 – 2.5 record would get the team hypo­thet­i­cally into opening round of cham­pi­onships,” said Lauren Eicher, a sophomore and member of Team 1107. “We have some work to do on case the­ories and our pre­sen­tation, but the improvement from Saturday’s rounds to Sunday’s was already evident.”

Team 1106, gave an even better per­for­mance. Not only did it achieve a perfect score, but the team, cap­tained by junior Nathan Cheng, won seven of the eight rounds by double digits. Cheng also scored his first Out­standing Attorney Award with 19 ranks. Twenty ranks is the highest an indi­vidual can score in one tour­nament.

“We were all very excited for him and proud of his hard work on the team,” Eicher said. “Nathan is going on the Wash­ington-Hillsdale Internship Program next semester so we were excited he ranked so well.”

Team 1106 tried out a new defense theory this tour­nament, swapping the “big-man defense theory,” in which they cede part of the prosecution’s alle­ga­tions against the defendant in exchange for a defense cen­tered on of one of the team’s strongest wit­nesses: senior Anna Fair Matthes.

“Anna Fair puts on an amazing per­for­mance. It just brings you to tears every time.” said junior Natalie Taylor, an attorney for Team 1106. “We were a lot more put together this weekend. You could really tell that everyone wanted it.”

Both teams learned over the weekend they were invited to par­tic­ipate in the Yale Invi­ta­tional tour­nament this December.

“This is very exciting because it shows that both of Hillsdale’s teams are seen as com­pet­itive teams,” Eicher said. “Both teams are excited to work hard and prepare for the tour­nament in December. We plan on scrim­maging with 1106 to better our per­for­mance before we face more dif­ficult teams.”

Freshman Julia Powell, a witness for Team 1107, said she has been well-pleased with the season so far.

“The mood at tour­na­ments is probably my favorite part: it’s high energy, fun, and some­thing humorous is always bound to happen in a round. And after spending two full days and a long bus ride home with your team­mates, you grow really tight,” Powell said. “I think this type of tight knit com­munity really sym­bolizes what Hillsdale is all about.”