Hall County spelling bee champion Parker Ramey advanced to the State Spelling Bee by placing second in the District 3 competition Saturday at North Gwinnett High School in Suwanee.
The top two spellers in each of eight district bees advance to the state competition March 19 at Georgia State University in Atlanta.
Parker, 12, a seventh-grader at South Hall Middle's Da Vinci Academy, placed seventh in the state bee last year and was the top male speller. He won the Hall County bee for the third straight time on Feb. 4. The winner there will advance to the national spelling bee in Washington.
Parker made it 22 rounds on Saturday before failing to spell "pasqueflower." Shruthi Santhanam of Gwinnett County emerged as the district winner.
Hall County runner-up Matthew Antoci of C.W. Davis Middle School finished third in the district bee and will advance to state as an alternate if either of the top two are unable to compete.
Words spelled correctly by Parker in the district bee included chronic, pragmatic, mongrel, prosaic, incredulous, beleaguer, flamboyant, hedonism, kuruma, adagio, hollandaise, gauche, bromeliad, anachronism, melange, vaquero, draconian, arthroscopy, perpend, triphibian and thermophilic.