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Mitchell team wins national NALSA moot court competition

After weeks of intense preparation, two full days of oral arguments, and several riveting performances, William Mitchell students Ryan McCarthy and Joshua Peterson won the annual National Native American Law Student Association moot court competition.

This year’s competition was held in the heart of the original Indian

William Mitchell teams competed at the 2014 NNALSA Moot Court Competition. From left to right: Professor Colette Routel, Anna Light, Joshua Peterson, Kelly McGinty, Brieanna Hoban, Ryan McCarthy, and Professor Sarah Deer.

William Mitchell teams competed at the 2014 NNALSA Moot Court Competition. From left to right: Professor Colette Routel, Anna Light, Joshua Peterson, Kelly McGinty, Brieanna Hoban, Ryan McCarthy, and Professor Sarah Deer.

Territory at the University of Oklahoma College of Law. It included 66 teams from law schools across the country arguing National Labor Management Relations Board v. Santana Tribe—a case involving an unfair practice charge brought by the Casino Employees International Union against a casino owned and operated by a federally recognized Indian tribe.

Teams submitted appellate briefs, which were scored by a panel of judges, and then argued their cases against one another before panels of three judges. The final round, held in the Dick Bell Courtroom at the University of Oklahoma, was argued in front of a distinguished panel of six judges.

In all, seven teams from William Mitchell participated in the competition. McCarthy and Peterson defeated a team from the University of Hawaii at Manoa William S. Richardson School of Law in the final round to win the championship. The team of Brieanna Hoban and Anna Light won first place for Best Brief, and Kelly McGinty won third place for Best Oralist.

Three other Mitchell teams advanced to the top 16, including Hoban and Light, who advanced to the quarterfinals; McGinty and Nicholas Leverson; and Rachel Mowry and Melissa Lorentz.

Strong performances were exhibited by all Mitchell teams, which included students Jeffrey Cormell, Anna Myhre, Nels Paulsen, John Donovon, Peter Rademacher, and Aarik Robertson.

The Mitchell teams were coached by Professors Colette Routel and Sarah Deer, who run the law school’s Indian Law program and Indian Law Clinic.

“All 14 Mitchell students who competed were tremendously well-prepared and received high scores for both knowledge and delivery,” said Professor Deer. “It was truly a team effort.”