Paramountcy, stephanotis stump area students in national spelling bee

The Shelton family has this point system for watching the Scripps National Spelling Bee

The Shelton family has this point system for watching the Scripps National Spelling Bee

While Fuller made it through Wednesday's round by spelling "tapas" and "nyctinasty" on stage in National Harbor, Md., she was cut on Thursday after the taking a written test used to narrow the field of 291 wordsmiths.

After seven rounds, Sundar secured a spot in the prime time finals.

Final rounds, expected to begin at 8:30 p.m. EDT (0030 GMT Friday), will be televised live on ESPN.

The points came into play at the end of Round 3, where if more than 40 spellers remain, they are eliminated based on number of points earned through the preliminary rounds.

Sundar, who competed in the 2016 spelling bee, is the only D.C. -area competitor left in the bee.

"They're all excited to know someone that's going to the national spelling bee because it's like".

New rules this year are aimed at preventing tie endings like last year's, when joint winners both got $40,000 cash prizes.

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Tejas Muthusamy, a 14-year-old from Glen Allen, Virginia, and Tara Singh, a 12-year-old from Louisville, Kentucky, are two out of three four-year veterans this year who are headed to the finals.

At least 20 states have spellers in Thursday's final, but the Golden State may take the crown.

Daniel Chen, of Chino Hills, on Thursday correctly spelled his first word, "perinephric", but incorrectly spelled "carosella", a type of fennel, by adding an "I" instead of the "O".

Wang said the competition is tough because numerous kids have prepared for the nationals since they were very young.

Last year's Bee co-champions were Indian Americans Jairam Hathwar and Nihar Janga.

"He actually got it (tandoori) wrong the first time when he first practiced but as much as Jeff loves food after he found out what it is by Googling the picture, he never got it wrong again", said Wang. The semifinalists are scheduled to be announced at approximately 3 p.m. following the conclusion of the third round.

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