Five Southland Students Correctly Spell Two Words at National Spelling Bee

Students Compete In Annual National Scripps Spelling Bee

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Three contestants from Los Angeles County and two from Orange County correctly spelled both of their words in the 92nd Scripps National Spelling Bee today and will learn Wednesday whether they qualified for the finals.

The Los Angeles County spellers who correctly spelled both words are:

-- Ayle Guevarra, a seventh-grader at Ernest Lawrence Middle School in Chatsworth, correctly spelled cruse, a small vessel, such as a jar or pot, for holding a liquid, in the first round and lucigen, a lamp or torch giving a bright light by burning a spray of oil mixed with hot air, in the second;

-- Dina Miranda, an eighth-grader at Stanford Middle School in Long Beach, correctly spelled intermittent, an adjective meaning coming and going at intervals, in the first round and proponent, one who argues in favor of something, in the second; and

-- Joshua Villanova, a seventh-grader at Traweek Middle School in West Covina, correctly spelled objurgation, a harsh rebuke, in the first round and genesis, a noun meaning the origin or coming into being of something, in the second.

The Orange County spellers who correctly spelled both words are:

-- Dean Alkhairy, a seventh-grader at Fairmont Private Schools' North Tustin Campus, correctly spelled mezzanine, a low-ceilinged story between two main stories of a building, in the first round and bicuspid, an adjective meaning having or ending in two points in the second, and;

-- Nicholas D'Sa, an eighth-grader at St. Cecilia Catholic School in Tustin, correctly spelled nepotism, a noun meaning favoritism, as in appointment to a job, based on kinship, in the first round and macronutrient, a chemical element or substance, such as potassium or protein, that is essential in relatively large amounts to the growth and health of a living organism, in the second.

Two Los Angeles County spellers correctly spelled their first word, but incorrectly spelled their second and were eliminated from the competition.

Chloe Na, a sixth-grader at Tesoro del Valle Elementary School in Valencia, correctly spelled liquesce, a verb meaning to liquefy, in the first round, but misspelled duologue, a dialogue between two persons, in the second, omitting the final two letters.

Joseph Vicente, a fifth-grader at Good Shepherd Catholic School in Beverly Hills, correctly spelled novercal, an adjective relating to, or characteristic of a stepmother, in the first round, but misspelled deceit, the act of causing someone to accept as true or valid what is false or invalid, in the second, adding an I between the C and the E.

The 562 spellers who began the competition took a multiple-choice test with 12 spelling words and 14 vocabulary questions on Monday, part of the qualifying process to advance to the finals. The test is considered the bee's first round.

Contestants spelling their third-round words correctly can advance to the finals, which are limited to a maximum of 50 spellers. Spellers' scores are plotted on a chart beginning at 36. Spellers at each consecutive scoring level are added until 50 spellers have been attained.

The list of qualifiers for Thursday's finals will be announced following completion of the third round Wednesday.

Spellers receive one point for each of the 12 items correctly identified in the spelling portion of the test, one point for each of the 12 items correctly identified in the initial vocabulary section, three points for a correct answer to the lone item in the second vocabulary section, and three points for a correct answer to the lone item in the third vocabulary section.

The bee is limited to students in eighth grade or below, with contestants ranging in age from 7 to 15.

The field consists of spellers from all 50 states and the District of Columbia, along with American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Department of Defense schools in Europe.

Seven foreign nations are also represented -- the Bahamas, Canada, Germany, Ghana, Jamaica, Japan and South Korea.

The bee is intended “to inspire children to improve their spelling, increase their vocabularies and develop correct English usage that will help them all their lives,” according to Paige Kimble, the bee's executive director and 1981 champion.

Photo: Getty Images

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