Law Magnet Program Names Mock Trial Coaches

Patrick Ahle, Former Prosecutor and JSerra Pre-Law Professional Magnet Program Advisor
Patrick Ahle, Former Prosecutor and JSerra Pre-Law Professional Magnet Program Advisor

The JSerra Pre Law Professional Magnet Program is pleased to announce our new mock trial competition coaches.  They are Mr. Jeffrey Tobin, Ms. Kimberly LaSalle, Mr. Bobby Taghavi, and Ms. Vanessa Woods.

These four outstanding attorneys have 53 years of experience as attorneys, and have completed over 300 jury trials and hundreds of other types of hearings and motions.  Each of them is extremely gifted in the practice of law.  Together, they will teach our law magnet students not only how to compete, but also how to excel in the upcoming Fall, 2013 Constitutional Rights Foundation Mock Trial Competition.  This is an outstanding coaching team and our students will be well served under their capable leadership and trial skills.

Lastly, Law Magnet Director Patrick Ahle will be acting as the fifth mock trial coach.  This will bring the coaching team’s collective number of years of experience as attorneys to 76 years, and our collective number of completed jury trials to over 400 trials.

For more information about the backgrounds of the law magnet coaches, please visit the JSerra Law Magnet here.

JSerra Happy With its New Place in Trinity League

VassarBy Damien Calhoun, OC Varsity

Finishing in the top three in the Trinity League is quite an accomplishment, and it’s one that JSerra’s boys basketball team is happy to celebrate.

The fifth-ranked Lions defeated third-ranked Orange Lutheran, 65-54, on Thursday night at Orange Lutheran to capture third place in league.

“This is highest finish we’ve ever had,” Lions coach Joedy Gardner said. “Last year, we tied them (Orange Lutheran) and we had a playoff and they beat us and that moved us down to fourth.

“We’re excited that we’re in the top three (in league). Our guys are working really hard and I think they deserved it. They were prepared.”

The top three teams in the league are guaranteed a berth in the upcoming CIF-SS basketball playoffs.

To read the complete article click CIF Playoffs.

Watch the boys in action as they take on Whitney High School Wednesday, February 13 at 7 p.m.

Rwandan Genocide Survivor Spreads Forgiveness

(left to right): Father Dan Wilder , Elizabeth, Dr. John Freeh Father Ubald, Pastor Rick Warren,  Kay Warren, and Rwandan Bob
(left to right): Father Dan Wilder, Elizabeth, Dr. John Freeh, Father Ubald, Pastor Rick Warren (Saddleback Church), Kay Warren, and Rwandan Bob

By Sarah Gray Isenberg, Patch.com

“Extreme horror requires extreme forgiveness,” boomed Father Ubald Rugirangoga in the JSerra High School gymnasium Friday.

The Rwandan genocide encompassed Rugirangoga’s childhood.

“I have never experienced a miracle before,” said Rugirangoga when asked how he survived the ethnic genocide after being forced to flee the killings. “I heard God’s voice in my ears, and he told me to run, to escape. So I did what he said.”

In 1963, Rugirangoga’s father was killed with his brothers and other relatives in one early wave of the genocide.

Rugirangoga and his family are Tutsis, an ethnic group that was historically victimized by the majority Hutus, an opposing Rwandan group.

“I have been subject to ethnic hatred,” he said. “My father was killed because of this hatred that exists.”

After his father’s murder, Rugirangoga’s mother labored in the fields to pay for his and his younger brother’s tuition for their religious schooling, and in 1984 Rugirangoga was ordained into priesthood in Rwanda.

However, the persecution was not over for the Tutsis.

To read the complete story click here.

JSerra students compete in Stanford Tournament

From left: JSerra Catholic High School students Aaron Komatsuzaki, Michael Chen, Leaf Ye, Jason Liu, Judy Cao and Silvie Zhang, participated in the annual Stanford Math Tournament.
From left: JSerra Catholic High School students Aaron Komatsuzaki, Michael Chen, Leaf Ye, Jason Liu, Judy Cao and Silvie Zhang, participated in the annual Stanford Math Tournament.

*From the Orange County Register 

Six JSerra Catholic High School international students competed in the annual Stanford Math Tournament in Palo Alto with Aaron Komatsuzaki taking home eighth place in the individual test, which included more than 600 participants.

JSerra was the only American school in the annual student-run math competition, which aims to encourage interest in math by providing high school students the opportunity to work on challenging problems with their peers. This very goal is what got Komatsuzak interested in competing in the Stanford competition.

“I am so pleased that we are able to compete with others that have the same interest and fascination as I do with math,” Komatsuzaki said. “I hope to one day become a biologist, and my experience with math now will, I feel, help me later in my university studies.”

The six competing JSerra students – Komatsuzaki, Jason Liu, Silvie Zhang, Judy Cao, Michael Chen and Leaf Ye – are international students from China and Japan. The high number of competitors is a first in school history.

To read the complete article click here.

For more on JSerra International visit them on Facebook.

Baseball: Beware of JSerra Sophomore Duo

Jake Pries at Batting Practice
Jake Pries at Batting Practice

By Eric Sondheimer, LA Times

The JSerra sophomore duo of pitcher Quentin Longrie and outfielder Jake Pries is ready to do lots of damage this spring.

Longrie has been one of the fall stars, striking out 14 batters in six innings while allowing one hit.

Pries, who played on varsity as a freshman, is maturing and preparing to be a major contributor this spring as a hitter.

For games schedules, results, photos, and more visit JSerra Baseball on Facebook. 

*Click the photo for videos on the athletes.

Tending the Lions’ Den

Lady Lions Head Coach Mary Rossignol
Lady Lions Head Coach Mary Rossignol

By Gabriel Rizk, OC Register

Of the more than 100 career wins Mary Rossignol has piled up as head of the JSerra Catholic girls’ basketball team, not many have come easy.

When you inhabit a league that includes teams like perennially nationally-ranked titan Santa Ana Mater Dei, as well as powerhouse Orange Lutheran, the tone is set for an uphill battle each and every year and Rossignol hasn’t deviated from that theme of challenging competition in her nonleague scheduling either.

Nonetheless it took Rossignol less than six seasons to reach the century mark, a milestone that happened Dec. 28 in a 65-24 tournament win over Newberry Park, and she’s successfully built the Lions into a program wholly capable of standing its ground amid the giants of Orange County basketball.

“We train really hard, we work really hard, we practice really hard,” Rossignol says. “The girls are really committed to one another. I’ve had a great coaching staff over the six years I’ve been here and we just try and outwork everybody, coaching staff-wise and players.

“Every year the program has gotten stronger and we’re continuing to try and build a power.”

Currently sitting at 107-65 overall with a 17-5 record in progress in her sixth season, Rossignol led the program to back-to-back 20 win seasons after taking control in 2007 and led the Lions to a CIF state second-round appearance in 2011.

To read the complete article click Lions Den.

For more on the Lady Lions visit them on Facebook.

Andres Mendoza Commits to UC Irvine

Andres Mendoza, JSerra senior and soccer center midfielder commits to UC Irvine.
Andres Mendoza, JSerra senior and soccer center midfielder commits to UC Irvine.

Congratulations to Andres Mendoza for signing his letter of intent, to play for the Anteaters at the University of California, Irvine. 

The center midfielder has had a successful high school soccer career as a Lion and looks forward to beginning his college career as an Anteater.

“It has always been my goal to play soccer in college, and now that all my hard work has paid off to meet my goal, I’d like to aspire to play professionally. Continuing my success in soccer and my education is a big focus, and I believe I can continue this at UCI.”

As the Lions look forward to their post-season to compete in CIF, coach Davor Fabulich had this to say about Mendoza:

“As a coach I am excited to see Andres play at UCI, they have a competitive program and an amazing coaching staff. Andres is on of JSerra’s top players and works hard as captain of the team. I couldn’t be more proud of Andres.”

To see more photos and other soccer college commitments from 2012-2013 click Lions.