June 24, 2011 -- A University of Houston Law Center team successfully argued a case involving holiday drinking, a red-nosed reindeer and the confrontation clause of the Constitution to walk away with the first place trophy in the Texas Young Lawyers Moot Court Competition. Seth Gagliardi, Patrick McKee, and Jameson Watts, all May graduates, won the final round over St. Mary’s Law School in a unanimous decision handed down by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.
The TYLA competition is held each year during the State Bar Convention, meeting this year in San Antonio. “Winning the TYLA competition is a particularly impressive achievement because Texas is the most competitive moot court state in the nation,” said Jim Lawrence, director of the Law Center’s Blakely Advocacy Institute.
In addition to winning the tournament, UHLC students also collected accolades for Best Speaker (Gagliardi), 3rd Best Speaker (McKee) and 2nd Best Brief (Watts). The team was coached by Law Center alums Tom Van Arsdel, Kristina Van Arsdel, and Merle Morris.
For more information on the University of Houston Law Center’s Blakely Advocacy Institute, please visit http://www.law.uh.edu/blakely/homepage.html.