Tripp Helzer, a 6th grader, won by correctly spelling “fumatorium” in the ninth round and then following up with his winning word, “starboard.” Demi Sonza, 7th grade, was the runner-up after incorrectly spelling the word “masa” in the ninth round.
There were 26 students who competed in the schoolwide spelling contest. By the sixth round, only four remained - Gehrig Burghardt, Matthew Spurgeon along with Helzer and Sonza.
Sonza had a chance in the sixth round to win after her three competitors in that round all misspelled their word. She correctly spelled her first word but missed on her winning word sending the contest on for another three rounds.
Both Helzer and Sonza will represent TK Middle School in the regional spelling bee early next year.
Contestants in this year’s schools-wide bee were Josephine Raphael, Matalie Underhill, Matthew Spurgeon, Manual Lopez Tapia, Connor Stockwell, Gehrig Burghardt, Makayla Price, Tripp Helzer, Brendon Stockwell, Pepper Selph, Demi Sonza, Arik Wilbur, Adrian Uslan, Leah Jones, Trinity Ring, Amelia Williams, Derek Guerrero-Garriga, Katelynn Cruz, Colton Jonker, Camden Peter, Isla Tillema, Denzel Guerrero-Garriga, Namoi Feenstra-Amouzou, Hunter Spidle, Savannah Minshell, and Austin Zehr.