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Friday, May 30, 2014

Nashua sixth-grader falls one point shy of spelling bee finals but hopes to return next year

Nashua sixth-grader Arushi Kalpande was one point short of continuing on at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. The 12 year-old student from the Infant Jesus School scored 27 of the necessary 28 points to move on to Thursday’s finals.

Arushi was positive regardless. ...

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Nashua sixth-grader Arushi Kalpande was one point short of continuing on at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. The 12 year-old student from the Infant Jesus School scored 27 of the necessary 28 points to move on to Thursday’s finals.

Arushi was positive regardless.

“I really enjoyed all the activities that I experienced in Bee Week,” she said. “I loved meeting new friends that share the exact same interest as me: spelling.”

She said she had been following this event for some time.

“I am so excited to see the National Spelling Bee, the very one that I’ve been watching since I was a little child, live in person,” she said. “It’s a very big honor to be able to participate in this competition, and I am honored to be one of the top 0.000026 percent out of 11 million spellers.”

Arushi had never been to D.C. before this trip, and Friday she’ll get the chance to see some sights.

“I really want to see all of the attractions that can be found in D.C., but I really want to visit all of the museums and learn all about history and science,” she said.

The 2014 Scripps National Bee had 281 participants from around the country. The 12 finalists competed Thursday night in the championship round.

For the first time in 52 years, two spellers were declared co-champions of the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Sriram Hathwar of Painted Post, New York, and Ansun Sujoe of Fort Worth, Texas, shared the title after a riveting final-round duel Thursday night in which they nearly exhausted the 25 designated championship words. After they spelled a dozen words correctly in a row, they both were named champions.

As for next year, Arushi hopes to be back.

“I definitely want to participate next year and improve my rank and performance.”

Material from the Associated Press was used in this report. Tina Forbes can be reached at 594-6402 or tforbes@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow Forbes on Twitter (@Telegraph_TinaF).