Jonesboro High School mock trial team and coaches are hole up at Brooklyn Marriott waiting out Hurricane Sandy after placing four in international competition.
By Kathy Jefcoats
NEW YORK — Members of the champion Jonesboro High School mock trial team and its attorney and teacher coaches should be heading home on a charter bus today.
Clayton County State Court Solicitor General Tasha Mosley texted the Clayton News Daily Wednesday morning that the school system approved chartering a bus for the return trip.
"The school board is awesome," Mosley texted. "They have sent a charter bus for us which should arrive any minute to bring us back home."
Mosley, attorney coaches Katie Powers of the Clayton County District Attorney's Office and State Court Judge John Carbo, and teacher coaches Andrew and Anna Cox left with the team last week for international competition in New York. The Jonesboro team took fourth place but have been stranded by Hurricane Sandy and the storm's aftermath.
The Jonesboro group were holed up at the Brooklyn Marriott with competitors from other states and countries. While the adults made sure the necessities were taken care of, the students enjoyed themselves.
“They are dancing and singing,” Mosley said. “They are so proud and so are we. They are a young team.”
Powers wasn't above having a little fun but she also saw having a captive audience as a way to get in a little work too.
“We are hunkered down here and will treat it like an adventure,” she said. “Maybe it will be a good time for extra practice.”
The group had hoped to fly out today but the airports flooded and closed.
Mosley's biggest concern during the forced encampment was paying high dollar for basic needs.
“I spent $55 on 21 bottles of water,” she said Sunday. “Price gouging at its best.”
The mock trial team competed in the Empire City Invitational. Teams from Ireland, South Korea, England, Canada and United States competed against each other for top honors. Mosley said Georgia was well-represented.
“Go Georgia,” Mosley texted. “Two of the three teams from Georgia placed in top five. Atlanta International, which is a private school, placed fifth. We have the best mock trial program in nation.”
Clayton school officials also approved the Atlanta International team catching a ride back home on the same bus as Jonesboro.
Powers is also proud of the team that is ranked higher than any other in the state.
“So proud of a basically rookie team who went undefeated and placed higher than any other Georgia school,” she said.
Members of the winning team are Callie Christian, Nancy Saucedo, Brianna McKnight, Erin Toole, Mylon Craig, Taylah Cash, Trevoris Brown, James Gossett, Jabria Hazel, Tori Allen, Kennedy Jones, Arly Zelaya, Phillip Watson, Samantha Hightower and Kiara Scott.
“Hopefully, by the early morning hours of Thursday, all children from the Atlanta area will be home safely,” said Mosley.