The end of the Fall 2021 semester included several accomplishments for the Temple Law National Trial teams and their members.

A team consisting of Abigail Cocco, Cormick McLaughlin, Freddie Moore III, and Edmund Nyarko placed second out of 64 teams in the 2021 All Star Bracket Challenge hosted by St. Mary’s University School of Law. 

“They were terrific,” said Jules Epstein, Edward D. Ohlbaum Professor of Law and Director of Advocacy Programs. The Temple Law team bested Octo-Finalists teams from Georgia State University College of Law, Drexel University Thomas R. Kline School of Law, University of Florida Levin College of Law, UC Hastings College of the Law, Quinnipiac University School of Law, Georgetown University Law Center, Florida State University College of Law, Tulane University School of Law; Quarter-Finalists teams from Fordham University School of Law, Pepperdine Caruso School of Law, Loyola University School of Law and St. John’s University School of Law; and Semi-Finalists teams from Faulkner and Pace. The final round went to the team from UCLA School of Law. 

After the competition, the team reflected on their work during the competition and how the experience helped to hone skills they’ll use as future lawyers. 

“I think that my biggest take from competing this semester is that we really are developing trial advocacy skills here that will serve us throughout our legal careers,” said 3L Freddie Moore III. “I feel like that’s something that Temple does better than anyone else!”

Fellow 3L Abigail Cocco agreed, noting, “This semester’s competition was a great opportunity to practice responding to objections and thinking on my feet. Trial Team has not only been an incredible learning experience, it’s also been a ton of fun and introduced me to some great people.”

2L Edmund Nyarko shared a similar enthusiasm for the connections he made as part of the National Trial Team. “The best part about an experience like this is that you get to work closely with people and watch them grow. I saw incredible growth in my teammates,” he said. “That’s not only a testament to their hard work but also the hard work of our coaches. Personally, I feel more assured in my decision to become a trial lawyer. I am very grateful and excited for what is to come.”

“I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to represent Temple Law and the success our team had in this year’s All Star Bracket Challenge,” said 2L Cormick McLaughlin. “Preparing for the competition was a lot of hard work but we had a ton of support from our coaches and the Trial Advocacy Department.”

The team’s coaches, Lauren Doig LAW ‘20 and Captain Valonne Ehrhardt, USMC, commended their skill and perseverance preparing for, and competing in, the rigorous All Star Bracket Challenge. 

“It’s been an honor to get to come back and coach the trial team since being a part of the team meant so much to me in law school.” said Doig. “These students are incredibly talented and their success at this intense competition is a testament to their dedication this semester.”

“It was such a great experience coaching at Temple for the first time. Our team was so motivating with our 3Ls Abbie and Freddie leading the way, and our 2Ls Edmund and Cormick who competed like they’ve been doing this for years,” said Captain Ehrhardt. “The other great thing about Temple is the amount of camaraderie amongst the entire trial advocacy program. The number of coaches and students that showed up to practices or our competition to help out and support meant so much to us. I am so impressed by the Temple trial advocacy machine. They’ve got it down to a science and I’m excited to be a part of it!”

In addition to the finalist placement at the 2021 All Star Bracket Challenge, our National Trial Teams competed in several competitions and Trial Team members were recognized with individual awards. The team of Dara Broadnax, Ashley Garland, Timmy Miller, and J.B. Fitzgerald finished as Quarter Finalists at a competition held by Syracuse University College of Law. The team of Mitch Atkins and Anne O’Connell finished as Quarter Finalists at a competition held by Fordham University School of Law. The team of Christopher Moore, Uladzimir Dorash, Terence Jones, and Aaron Freedman finished as Semi-Finalists at the 2021 Summit Competition hosted by the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. The team of Aaron Freedman, Jennifer Stern, Rachel Dansky, and Ananya Kulkarni competed at the Greene Broillet & Wheeler National Civil Trial Competition, which resulted in three Temple Law students receiving individual awards: Aaron Freedman for best direct, Rachel Dansky for best closing, and Ananya Kulkarni for best cross.

Watch the championship round of the 2021 All Star Bracket Challenge here:

*Featured photo includes All Star Bracket Challenge Finalists Abigail Cocco, Cormick McLaughlin, Freddie Moore III, and Edmund Nyarko.