This past weekend, the St. Thomas Law Mock Trial Team captured both first and second place at the 2022 Florida Justice Association Mock Trial State Competition held at the Richard E. Gerstein Justice Building in Miami, Florida. Members Gaby Matos Gutierrez (3L), Sophia Carrasco (3L), Victoria Pineda (3L), Vanessa Guiracoche (2L), Conor Sloan (3L), Quinn Coolidge (3L), Andrew Tuma-Waku (3L), and Michael Rizo (2L) all competed and advanced to the Final Round. The competition was composed of 5 schools and each school sent two teams. Participating schools included Florida State University, University of Miami, Barry University, Stetson University, and St. Thomas University. Advocates Gaby Matos Gutierrez, Conor Sloan, and Victoria Pineda all won Best Advocate in their Preliminary Rounds, with Gaby Matos Gutierrez winning the Overall Best Advocate Award for Preliminary Rounds.
1st Place Winners: Team of Gaby Matos Gutierrez, Sophia Carrasco, Victoria Pineda, and Vanessa Guiracoche; 2nd Place Winners: Team of Conor Sloan, Quinn Coolidge, Andrew Tuma-Waku, and Michael Rizo.
On Saturday night, both teams found out they would be moving on to the Semi-Finals, where they went up against teams from Barry University and Stetson University. After completing the Semi-Final Rounds, both teams advanced to the Finals, making it St. Thomas University v. St. Thomas University for the Championship. Upon the conclusion of an amazing and close Final Round, the winning verdict was given to the Defense, comprised of Gaby Matos Gutierrez, Sophia Carrasco, Victoria Pineda, and Vanessa Guiracoche, with Victoria Pineda winning Final Round Best Advocate. The teams attribute their success to their four alumni coaches, Jeff James, Karina Harduvel, Carolina Del Campo, and Mary Rojas.
Congratulations to these amazing students, alumni, and the St. Thomas Mock Trial Team!