Students ask for community’s help to make it to national competition

Local News

A team of Topeka students is making history and working on bringing home a national title. But they’ll have to travel to Georgia to do that, and the jury is out on how they’ll get there.

Michaela Webb and Caleb Soliday both do mock trial at Washburn University. They also spend hours each week coaching the team at Hayden High. 

“I didn’t really know what to expect coming in, but these kids blew me away. They are so good, each of them are so talented,” Webb said.  

When the Hayden High Mock Trial Team started up just a couple of months ago, they never imagined they’d be headed to nationals. 

“For the fact that this is the first year that they’ve ever competed and they get to go on a national stage going against some of the schools that have been doing this for decades. They’ve been doing this one year and they’re already at the national stage,” Soliday said. 

Now they all have something to prove to the other states competing. 

“Just because you’re from Kansas doesn’t mean you can’t perform very well,” Webb said.  

“To take a team at a national level and show Topeka in a positive light, I think is really great,” Soliday said.  

They need the community’s help to get there. The team is trying to raise around $8,000 for flights, hotels and food for nationals in May.

If you want to help them you can find their GoFundMe here. Or you can contact Travis Lamb at or (785) 272-5210. 

“It’s not cheap going to a national tournament, there are a lot of expenses involved,” Soliday said. 

The coaches said these students have already worked to make their community proud. 

“This team has worked so hard. All of the students have worked so hard to get where they’re at. They’re all so passionate and driven. Even if this isn’t something they want to continue on and do they’ve given in their all,” Webb said.  

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