Sixteen contenders to face off in final of U.S. spelling bee

Sixteen contenders to face off in final of U.S. spelling beeCoolly acing such obscure words as “staphylinid,” “amphipneustic” and “synecphonesis,” 16 young contestants made it to the final round of the Scripps National Spelling Bee on Thursday after five hours of tense competition. “I knew almost all the words in Round 6, so I was really upset,” said Melodie Loya, 13, who forgot the silent “g” in the word “pignoli,” a synonym for pine nuts. The 91st annual bee, which began on Tuesday and ends on Thursday night, opened with a field of more than 515 spellers, aged 8 to 15, hailing from across the United States and eight other countries.


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