Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News
Kalona, Iowa

Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News

December 14, 2017 Mid-Prairie mock trial qualifies for state
Article Pages -- as published on the The Kalona News website.

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A team comprised of mostly first-year mock trial participants helped propel the Mid-Prairie Middle School mock trial team to a state appearance in Des Moines Nov. 27 and 28, propelled by a perfect 2-0 record at regionals that impressed the judges.

The team, under second-year coach Kristen McCall, was not necessarily the one which McCall would have expected at the beginning of the mock trial season. She lost her entire team from the previous year to the high school and as the new season started, some people really stood out.

“Who I wanted to be on the (regional) team, that changed drastically. People surprised me. People stood out and wanted to stand out,” McCall said.

The perfect encapsulation was substitute Connor Jennings coming up big last minute ahead of the team’s regional matchup. Due to a sickness of a witness, Jennings had just two hours to memorize 130 responses. Not only did he do that, but he even bagged himself a nomination as outstanding witness.

“I think that really pumped him up to say, ‘I can really do this,’” McCall said.

Jennings, an eighth-grader, said he joined the team because he was interested in the concept. He was joined by fellow witnesses Thaddeus Shetler, a fellow eighth-grader, who had the team suggested to him, and seventh-grader Emily Righter, who has an interest in law.

The legal team included Gracie Kiene, an eighth-grader in her third year of mock trial, but first at Mid-Prairie, and eighth-grader Madison Kelly. Both said they enjoyed the fun of going after opposing witnesses in the cross-examination portion.

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