Yared DeAnda, a 14-year-old eighth-grader at Davis Middle School, won the 2016 Hall County Spelling Bee.
Yared won on his first try in the spelling bee, Davis Middle Principal Eddie Millwood said.
He won against 30 other participants, who represented 21 elementary and middle schools in the spelling bee, held Jan. 26.
Yared won in the ninth round when he correctly spelled “dogma.”
Roman Yaskulka, a seventh-grader at North Hall Middle, finished as first runner-up.
Millwood said Yared is “a great student. He works very hard. He’s smart, very quiet. I was very proud he won. He’s a good kid.”
Roman was the second runner-up in 2014 as a sixth-grader, Ginny Sapp, media specialist at North Hall Middle School, said.
“As a sixth-grader, he placed, and we were hoping he was going to win the whole thing (this year),” Sapp said.
Roman missed “catkin” — using an “e” instead of “i,” she explained. It means “a bunch of flowers that grow in close rows on the branches of trees (such as willows or birches),” according to Merriam-Webster online.
He is a member of the Earhart-Edison Academy and the academic team at North Hall. He participates in basketball and track.
The top two spelled against each other for the final two rounds. The bee included 104 words for the participants.
Both boys will advance to the District 2 Spelling Bee in Gwinnett County Feb. 27. Winners there will advance to the state championship with the ultimate goal of reaching the National Spelling Bee finals, which will be broadcast live on ESPN.
The county bee was held at the Academies of Discovery. West Hall Middle media specialist Genia Reid was the coordinator for the bee.
The Scripps Company started the spelling bee in 1925.