Madison Fickinger didn't really enjoy the attention on stage during The Republican-Herald’s 63rd annual bee, but she didn't let that stop her from winning. The Williams Valley Elementary sixth-grader proved the best of 48 spellers from the Pottsville, Pennsylvania, area when she spelled “marinade.”
Two letters and then a pause proved to be the winning tempo for Shawn Terrado as she won the Central Oklahoma Bee, sponsored by The Oklahoman. The Elgin Middle School student had to outspell 39 others through 26 rounds before getting her championship word — “unsuitable.”
Photo credit: The Oklahoman
Snehal Choudhury, an eighth-grader from Jackson Memorial Middle School in Massillon, Ohio, won the 72nd Canton Repository Regional Bee with "sociable." She described the feeling that probably resonates with many spellers — “I was nervous because I didn’t know what word I was going to get, but you get this thrill just doing it.”
Photo credit: Julie Vennitti, Canton Repository
After watching her sister win for two years, this was Sophia Nguyen's time to shine at the Northwest Missouri Regional bee. Sophia, a seventh-grader at Bode Middle School, won in the 32nd round with "secrete." She really loves spelling and has a natural talent for it.
Photo credit: St. Joseph News-Press
Since the third grade, Sukesh Kamesh was a familiar face at the Sunflower Spelling Bee in Wichita, Kansas, until last year when he didn't qualify. That was the motivation he needed to set a new goal for winning the regional bee in 2018. The seventh-grader from Kingman Elementary/Middle School did just that when he spelled "carboniferous" in a 27-round match.
Photo credit: Kayley Conner, The Hays Daily News
Jake Gordy, a seventh-grader at Somerset Intermediate School in Westover, Maryland, lasted through 26 rounds of words to finally win with "morality" at the Maryland Eastern Shore Regional Spelling Bee. He placed third last year and was motivated to study to get another chance at winning. His mom said he's a voracious reader.
Photo credit: University of Maryland Eastern Shore
Una VanWynsberghe overcame a misspelling in the final rounds of the 64th annual Journal Gazette Regional Spelling Bee in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, to come back and win for the third time. The eighth-grader from Lincolnview Junior-Senior High School in Van Wert, Ohio, missed on a championship word. On her second chance in a later round, she did not miss with "satyagraha."
Photo credit: Rachel Von, The Journal Gazette
In his first island-wide spelling competition Adrian James Beltran, did not expect to win, but he surprised himself by correctly spelling, "indentation." The seventh-grader from F.B. Leon Guerrero Middle School in Guam won the 46th annual Regional Spelling Bee, sponsored by Pacific Daily News. He is looking forward to coming to the mainland with his mom.
Photo credit: Rick Cruz, Pacific Daily News
After placing third last year, Maanvi Sarwadi, a seventh-grader from Caravel Academy, was determined to win the Delaware spelling bee this year. After more than five hours and 28 rounds, she used her knowledge of rules for Greek words where "y" is used for the "i" sound to correctly spell "phyton."