Trial Team To Compete in ‘Tournament of Champions’

Published: August 19th, 2002

Category: News

The UF Trial Team will compete in Austin, Texas, Oct. 30-Nov. 2, at the “Tournament of Champions,” generally considered the most prestigious tournament of the year. Only 12 of the nation’s ABA-accredited law schools — including Harvard, Temple, Loyola and University of Texas — receive invitations, based on team performance over the past three years. UF also will compete at national competitions in Los Angeles (National Civil Trial Advocacy Championship Tournament), Chicago (National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers) and Michigan State. The invitations are due to team members making the finals in all 2001-02 competitions entered. Of 400 teams competing at the national level, only UF had units in two Final Fours — the American Bar Association and American Trial Lawyers competitions. “It was great to be invited to every fall tournament we applied for,” said Trial Team President Shawntoyia Grier. Team member Desiree Demonbreun added, “We have Faculty Advisor Carl Schwait and our coaches to thank for our consistent victories. Hard work and talent coupled with dedicated coaches is our recipe for success.” Fermin Lopez, who served on two of last semester’s firstplace teams, said “We have a great chance of winning the Tournament of Champions; the only difference between us and Harvard is geography. The team is dedicated to continuing to deliver noticeably high trial advocacy skills at these competitions and looks forward to successfully representing UFLaw.” Schwait said, “This is a huge accomplishment. The students deserve this heightened level of recognition, since they worked extremely hard to achieve success.” Third- or fourth-semester students interested in joining Trial Team should attend an informational meeting Thursday (Aug. 22), 6 p.m., 290 Holland Hall. Tryouts begin Aug. 28. Visit the Trial Team office for information.

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