Moot Court Teams Excel at Regional Competition in Phoenix

2014 moot court national teamAt the Regional Moot Court Competition held November 8, 2014, in Phoenix, both teams from the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law advanced to the semi-final rounds, and one, the team of Clay Hardman, Matthew Church and Christopher Bond, will proceed to the National Finals in New York City.

Four schools participated in this year’s competition—Arizona State, Colorado, Arizona Summit, and Utah. Each year, two teams from each region advance to compete in the National Moot Court Competition held in New York City (to be held February 9-12, 2015), but those two teams cannot be from the same school.

After the first two rounds of arguments, four teams in the regional competition advanced to the semi-finals. The Utah and Colorado teams occupied all four of the semi-final spots. On the briefs, the two Utah teams had the second- and fourth-best briefs in the competition.

The team of Clay Hardman, Matthew Church and Christopher Bond had the second- best brief in the regional competition. They lost to a Colorado team by only a few hundredths of a point but had a strong enough showing to advance to the national finals. As one judge noted, “I had more questions, but Matt was so good, that I just sat back and listened to him.”

The other Utah team at the competition was Jessica Horton, Shaun Mathur and Christine Hashimoto. In the semi-finals, they faced the team from Colorado with the best brief score in the competition, and the Utah team bested the Colorado team handily in oral argument. But after factoring in the brief scores, they fell by only a fraction of a point.

Team coach Troy Booher said, “The students worked tremendously hard on their briefs and in preparing for oral argument. That experience not only will serve them well after graduation but also showed in the competition. We are very pleased that both teams advanced to the semi-final round and that a Utah team again this year will be competing in the national finals in New York.”

Along with congratulations for the teams, Booher thanked those who helped the two teams prepare. “Again this year, Karen Fuller and Suzanne Faddis made the process seamless,” he said. Booher also thanked Rita Cornish, ’06, and Jess Krannich, ’05, each of whom worked with a team and provided general advice for oral arguments. Volunteer judges for practice rounds included Jeremy Christensen, ’14, Stephen Dent, ’14, Dick Baldwin, ’13, Nathanael Mitchell, ’13, Laurie Abbott, ’13, Jonathan Pappasideris, ’03, Cheylynn Hayman, SJQ’03, and Diana Hagen, ’98, as well as Professors Teter, Rosky and Cassell.

“Thank you all for your time and insights,” Booher concluded. “The volunteers really make our program a step above other programs.”