It’s case closed — Timothy’s all-star Mock Trial team won third place at State! These young attorneys and witnesses battled it out in (virtual) courts against some of the toughest teams in the state and won all of their trials. In their first two rounds, the team played Wheeling High School and Niles West High School, whom one coach said: “Was the team the rest of us are all chasing.”
Well, the Timothy squad caught them.
“It was a classic match-up of two elite teams,” Coach Roelofs explains, “I believe it came down to an objection battle between Josh Pae and an excellent Niles West attorney that ended with Josh winning the judge’s ruling. And no one in the state is better at giving powerful closing arguments than Kate Buikema.”
By winning those trials, Timothy earned its way into the Elite Eight.
Those eight teams competed in one more trial to determine the top three finishers in the state. The Trojans played Stevenson High School in their final round, a team that had won some of the tournaments during the regular season.
In another hotly contested trial, Timothy won by a hair. Evanston High School, a team the Trojans did not see this year, was awarded the state championship, followed by the College Preparatory School of America in second. However, for their outstanding performance throughout this weekend, Carter Bulthuis (’21) was awarded the honor of All-State Witness and Kate Buikema (’21) earned the title of All-State Attorney. The rest of the varsity team — Joshua Pae (’21), Lauren Ellens (’21), Jonathan Pae (’22), Leah Tornow (’22), Kaitlyn Radoha (’22), and David Sianghio (’22) — also garnered high scores and demonstrated incredible ability in the competition.
After months of hard work and hours of Zoom practice, these students are satisfied with their performance. “Even if we didn’t get first—that’s ISBA scoring for you— I’m still really proud of this team and all we’ve accomplished this year in spite of the odds,” says Captain Kate Buikema. “We have the best coaches and team camaraderie in the league and that’s really what has mattered more than any individual award or victory.”