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Eastern Kentucky University’s Mock Trial Team is one of 48 teams nationally, and the only squad from a regional comprehensive institution, headed to the American Mock Trial Association National Championship Tournament (NCT).

The EKU team finished first at AMTA’s Opening Round Championship (ORC) Series tournament in Memphis, Tennessee, March 18-20. Eastern split its first-round matchup with Baylor University before sweeping ballots in the remaining three rounds against the University of Alabama, Millsaps College, and Texas A&M.

By finishing first in the 24-team tournament, EKU earned a bid to the national event, to be held in Greenville, South Carolina, April 15-17. Five other teams qualified for the NCT out of the Memphis ORC: the University of Cincinnati, Rhodes College (two teams), Washington University in St. Louis, and Millsaps College.

EKU will be the lone NCT team from Kentucky. The University’s remarkable run this year has included three first-place tournament finishes (Great Lakes Invitational, AMTA Regional in Louisville, and AMTA ORC in Memphis), a program record.

Allie Maples, a junior political science major from Mount Sterling, was the only student in the tournament to receive an Outstanding Attorney Award on both the prosecution and defense sides of the case. Anthony Sean Potter, a senior political science major from Whitesburg, earned an Outstanding Witness Award for his portrayal of a forensic investigator in the case.

Other members of the championship-bound team include Matt Boggs, a senior political science and history double major from Whitesburg; Ryan Wiggins, a freshman political science major from Georgetown; Melissa Mahan, a junior anthropology major from Bloomington, Illinois; Laura Jackson, a sophomore political science major from Artemus; and Mackenzie DeSpain, a senior homeland security major from Campbellsville. Maples, Boggs, and Jackson are all members of EKU Honors.

The EKU Mock Trial Program is sponsored by EKU University Programs. Faculty and staff assisting with the program include Tom Parker, Lynnette Noblitt, Brandon Williams, Kristeena Johnson, and Dean Sara Zeigler.