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Northwestern Law Team Wins Regional Trial Competition

Bartlit trial team to advance to national competition in March

CHICAGO --- A Northwestern Pritzker School of Law Bartlit Center Trial Team won first place in the Midwest Regional of the National Trial Competition held in Chicago Feb. 18-20. 

Michael Maione (3L) and Stacey Kapustina (2L) captured first place and will go on to compete in Dallas for the National Championship on March 30 through April 3, sponsored by the Texas Young Lawyers Association. In addition, Maione was named the competition’s outstanding advocate. 

A team from Loyola University Chicago School of Law took first place in the regional’s other bracket, and will also compete in Dallas.

Northwestern’s other team -- Doug Bates (2L) and Kelly Menemaier (3L) -- also reached the playoff rounds before losing closely in the semi-finals.

This marks the seventh consecutive year -- under coach Richard Levin of the Levin Riback Law Group -- in which a Northwestern Bartlit Center team reached the regional finals, and the fourth championship. Northwestern has won the National Trial Championship four times, which is the second most of any law school.

Steven Lubet, Williams Memorial Professor of Law and director of the Bartlit Center on Trial Advocacy at Northwestern, congratulated the students and their coach. 

“Rick Levin has done a tremendous job of teaching our students how to be effective and ethical trial lawyers,” Lubet said. “He emphasizes a deep understanding of the trial process itself, which equips our students to handle cases in real life, far beyond the competition.”

Levin praised his students for the hard work and dedication. 

“I am always amazed at the effort and energy the students devote to the trials,” Levin said. “Stacy was singled out by Justice McBride for her exceptional cross examination, and Mike’s closing argument was one of the best I’ve ever seen. They are awesome.”