Murfreesboro — UTC's Gold Team, lead by senior and treasurer Lydia Birch, took second place at Middle Tennessee State University's (MTSU) annual invitational.
The weekend included a lot of historic firsts for Chattanooga's program. The team won 7 ballots out of 8, a never before done feat. It was also the first trophy finish for any UTC team at MTSU, which is especially impressive considering the program's long history at the tournament.
Attorney and Coach Mike 'Gig' Giglio said that gold team "is very young and inexperienced. They've had a tough beginning to the season." Despite that inexperience, "they stood tall and won 7 of 8 ballots, taking second place out of 48 teams."
UTC Gold took two ballots against MTSU and University of Tennessee Knoxville's (UTK) A and B teams. Their only dropped ballot of the weekend came against Fresno State, where they went 1-1.
The victory against both UTK teams underscored an in-state rivalry between the two programs. Coach Giglio noted the wins. "In the process [of the competition], we swept two UTK teams - showing that we are THE University of Tennessee," (emphasis his).
The success is an encouraging sign for the program's continued growth. "We would not be where we are today without the dedication of our coaches," Said Birch. "I am consistently blown away by the time and experience that they pour into this program. It was a daunting task coming into this season as a captain, knowing that a majority of the team had never done Mock Trial before." The young talent of the team indicates good things for the future.
In addition to the podium finish, the team took away two individual awards. Student-attorney Mac Martin took finished with a near-perfect 19 of 20 ranks and rookie Chris Guin finished with 18 of 20 ranks for a witness award.
"I see so many great things for this team in the future. We have so much talent and potential going forward, I know this team will continue to do great things," said Birch. When asked where she thought the future of the program would be, she responded that she "think[s] the future of this program is limitless. I can’t wait to see what UTC Mock Trial is capable of!"