Rutgers Mock Trial Team Takes First Place at Penn State Invitational

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HAPPY VALLEY, P.A. – The Rutgers University Mock Trial Association (“RUMTA”) had great success at Penn State University’s Happy Valley Invitational this past weekend. Against a field that included 6 teams that competed at last year’s National Championship Tournament, two of RUMTA’s three competitive teams placed in the top-10. Rutgers’ top squad, the A-Team, took home first place with a record of 7-1 and Rutgers’ B-Team finished 5th with a record of 5-3. Finally, the Rutgers’ C-Team, one of the strongest C-Teams in the organization’s history, won three out of four ballots against teams from established programs Lafayette College and Johns Hopkins University.

In addition, three Rutgers team members received individual awards. RUMTA’s President Gregory Cui, the closing attorney for the prosecution, won a Top Attorney Award with a perfect 20 ranks. Secretary Shaleen Patel and newcomer Brandon Ferrick won Top Witness Awards, Brandon Ferrick also with 20 ranks. In each of the weekend’s four rounds, Rutgers’ teams litigatedState of Midlands v. Whit Bowman, an accomplice liability case in which the defendant is charged with theft by deception and first degree robbery.

“I’m extremely proud of the team. Now that we’ve tasted victory, it’s going to be hard to accept anything less,” stated Captain of the A-Team Gregory Doukas. “This competition was significant because we set the pace for the season. It’s a high bar, but I’m confident that we can maintain this level of success. We worked hard to take first place at the invitational, but we will continue to push ourselves to reach our ultimate goal: the National Championship title,” said Gregory Cui.

RUMTA has scheduled multiple invitational competitions as well as inter-team scrimmages this winter in preparation for the regional competition in February. If the organization can place one of its three teams in the top seven at the regional competition, they will advance to the Open Round Championships to compete for a spot in the National Championship Tournament. RUMTA finished second in the nation in 2012.

The team is coached by Middlesex County Bar members Craig Aronow of Rebenack Aronow& Mascolo in New Brunswick, Michael Roberts of Roberts & Teeter in New Brunswick, and Kimberly Yonta of Yonta Law in New Brunswick.

RUMTA receives a significant portion of its funding from local attorneys, law firms, and the Middlesex County Bar Foundation. RUMTA is also sponsored by the Rutgers Alumni Association, which has continued to support the team since 2012.

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