Congrats to Ansun Sujoe and Sriram Hathwar! For the first time in more than 50 years, not one, but TWO young spellers were crowned co-champions of the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
It’s a tie! Texan Ansun Sujoe, 13, and New Yorker Sriram Hathwar, 14, spelled themselves into a “tie” title at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in National Harbor, Md. on May 29. After both teens whizzed through five rounds without misspelling a single word, officials declared two champions for first time since 1962.
Scripps Spelling Bee Winners 2014: Co-Champions Crowned For 1st Time In 50 Years
The exciting two-and-a-half hour competition began on May 27, with 281 spellers from around the world. After intense cuts, the final round of 12 contestants included eight boys and four girls. Ansun and Sriram were neck and neck for the entire spelling showdown!
First, Sriram misspelled “corpsbruder” (it means close comrade). Ansun could’ve nabbed the title right then, but he misspelled “antigropelos” (those are waterproof leggings). The boys then went head-to-head in a grueling spell-off with Scripps’ 25 designated championship words. After spelling nearly 12 words correctly in a row, they were both officially crowned champions!
Both Winners Still Get A Grand Prize
The boys might have to share the championship title, but they will each receive the winning prizes in full. Both Ansun and Sriram get to claim a $30,000 cash prize AND a $2,500 savings bond. On top of that, both boys won a complete Merriam-Webster reference library and more than $1,000 worth of Encyclopaedia Britannica books.
Congratulations to both winners! We absolutely love watching Scripps’ annual spellathon. How about YOU, HollywoodLifers? Would you be bummed if you were crowned a co-winner instead of the solo grand champion? Let us know!
— Megan Ross