Closing statement to a strong season


After a three-month hiatus, Diamond Bar High School’s Mock Trial team competed in their State Championship, but ultimately were unsuccessful in taking home the state title. Despite their loss, a few members were recognized for their individual achievements.

This year’s case, the People v. Cobey, was presented to the team last September—for which they took six victories before receiving the opportunity to participate in the LA Regionals and qualify for the state competition. 

“The students were actually so motivated that they would meet on their own sometimes on the weekend or at night,” Mock Trial adviser Latitia Thomas said. “Seniors Emily Zhang and Eileen Zu are the ones who dispense information to everybody and they get people to practice without me.”

For Diamond Bar, the State Championship lasted four days, with participants being judged on the quality of their performances for both their defense and prosecution of the case. In the end, the team placed 14 out of the 32 competitors.

“Even though we didn’t win, it’s amazing that we won out of the largest county—which is larger by over two times,” sophomore Ashley Cha said. “What we achieved is a lot greater than we thought we could.”

Displaying her excellence in the competition, junior Alexandra Chala, was awarded for her exemplary performance. Additionally, Thomas was recognized by the state as the adult advocate of the year.

“My team put together a 30 second video with the help of a handful of past team members,” Thomas said. “Almost all of the current team came to my classroom to watch the live stream of the virtual award ceremony.”

 Chala was awarded as an Outstanding Prosecuting Attorney. Outside of the courtroom competition, junior Marcus Hsieh came in second place for his work as a courtroom journalist. 

Chala attributed her award to the effective objections she made during the competition. She said that the opposing counsel would often revoke their questions the second she made an objection.

“I thought we were fantastic. It was a brutal competition because it was four days of competing in the regionals. We have a few weeks in between the rounds, or at least a few days, but having four straight days of competition was exhausting,” Chala said. “Despite all of it, I think we performed great.”