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Mock trial team ends season in down-to-the wire battle

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The Illinois State University mock trial team missed advancing to the National Championship Tournament by one point in the last round of the national semifinals. Illinois State participated in the American Mock Trial Association (AMTA) Opening Championship Rounds Series (ORCS) March 16–18 in Geneva, Illinois.

The Redbirds won five ballots and lost three. In the last round of the tournament, they faced the University of Illinois-Urbana. The presiding judge awarded Illinois State the win by two points. The other judge gave Illinois the win by a single point. Because of the split decision, Illinois State University placed seventh out of 23 teams participating in the tournament. Only the top six teams move to the next level.  Illinois State defeated teams from Macalester College and North Central College.

The top team of the tournament was Northwestern University, the only school to go undefeated in the tournament. Northwestern gave Illinois State two losses by small margins.  This was the ninth time in 10 years the Redbirds advanced to ORCS, which is AMTA’s national semifinal tournament. The team tied the school record for wins at this tournament. In 2013, Illinois State went 5–3 and advanced to the national championship.


Picture of Head Attorney Coach

Head Attorney Coach Scott Kording

Myles McLean, a senior majoring in legal studies, was one of 13 competitors awarded the Outstanding Attorney Award. Bloomington attorney and Illinois State alumnus Scott Kording served as the head attorney coach for the past ten years. Kording is retiring from coaching this year. He has served as attorney coach longer than any of his predecessors. Bloomington attorney Josh Rinker, also an Illinois State University alumnus, will succeed Kording as the head attorney coach in the fall.

Scott Kording’s contributions will be sorely missed, according to Director of Legal Studies Thomas McClure.

“We are fortunate Scott Kording served as the head attorney coach for so many years,” McClure said. “Even with his busy law practice and growing family, he made mock trial a high priority. Through his dedication to the program, Scott built a strong, competitive mock trial team year after year.”