Sixth grader to represent Goreville at Tri-State Bee
Goreville Grade School crowned a new Spelling Bee Grand Champion Friday afternoon as sixth grader Ryan Holland successfully completed the competition correctly spelling “pestilent” in the eighth and final round.
Holland will represent Goreville at the Tri-State Bee in February, held in Indiana, for a chance to advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Students attending Friday morning’s Bee competition in the Grade School gym booed at the idea of having to wait until a new week to return to the Grand Championship round after fifth grade level competitors Andrew Manier and eventual winner Zach Dudley ran overtime in the course of 24 rounds.
Bee coordinators had to sift through word choices from the higher-grade levels to pull words into the fifth grade level competition as the rounds continued to proceed without a winner declared.
The final two fifth graders were alone in less than three rounds as each continued to correctly spell their challenge words until round eleven when Manier failed to spell “casualty” correctly leaving Dudley to spell “tolerable” and then a final championship word, “perfectionism.”
Dudley came close but could not pull together the final word, which allowed for another twelve rounds to pass before he correctly put together a final challenge.
As both Dudley and Manier continued to correctly and then incorrectly spell their challenge words, the audience participation began to wane. Students would cheer as each contender appeared to have it wrapped up only to slump into the next round as they tripped up on their final words, which would have crowned them champion of their grade level.
As the cheering faded into an exercise of patience, Manier and Dudley continued with such words as “nominative, anemic, compunction, salubrious, augury, paucity, ineluctable, diaphanous, incandescent, cadre, depilatory, vibrant, boisterous and pantheon” until finally, in the 24th round Manier failed to spell “germinate” correctly. Dudley then correctly spelled “petulant” and the final word, “mandible” to win the fifth grade level Spelling Bee as the students exploded in applause and relief for the round to finalize, but they were far from satisfied until the full Bee was complete. Coordinators offered to return the following week to complete the championship round, which caused the students to erupt into a chorus of boos so much so that it was quickly decided the Bee would instead reconvene after lunch.
“After all of those rounds they just sat through now, they didn’t want to have to wait until next week to find out who would become the final champion,” said Bee Coordinator Allison Robison.
The final match closed out much quicker than the Fifth graders, coming to a completion in just eight rounds as 5th grader Zach Dudley, 6th grader Ryan Holland, 7th grader Shayna Elms and 8th grader Ellen Scola competed for the Goreville Grade School Spelling Bee Championship title.
Four students from each of the grades fifth through sixth competed in the Bee with each receiving a ribbon and/or trophy for having made it to Friday’s competition:
Fifth Graders: First place went to Zach Dudley; second to Andrew Manier; third to Payton Sopczak; and fourth to Zach Orr.
Sixth Graders: First place went to Ryan Holland; second to Lauren Favell, third to Hallie Grenfell; and fourth to Grayson Venus.
Seventh Graders: First place went to Shayna Elms; second to Chance Duringer; third to Tori Benard; and fourth to Grant Venus.
Eighth Graders: First place went to Ellen Scola; second to Hunter Kilmer; third to Kris Dubson; and fourth Emily Hunt.