San Diego student falls in spelling bee semis

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – It took a word not even listed in some dictionaries to knock a San Diego seventh-grader out of the semifinals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee Thursday in National Harbor, Md.

Snigdha Nandipati of Francis Parker School became one of the 41 semifinalists from the original field of 275 and was the first one to step up to the stage in the semifinals.

The word that got her eliminated was kerystic, which she spelled keristic. The word refers to a sermon or homily.

According to the website wordnik.com, kerystic is not an acceptable word in Scrabble.

Nandipati earlier spelled meridienne correctly. A meridienne is a type of short sofa with uneven arms.

Nandipati was the only Californian in the semifinals.

Southern California has produced only one champion of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, which began in 1925 — Anurag Kashyap of Poway, the 2005 winner.

The bee is limited to students in eighth grade or below, with this year's original field of contestants ranging in age from 8 to 15 and from third through eighth grades.

The winner of the bee will receive $30,000 from Scripps, which owns television stations and newspapers; a $5,000 scholarship from the Sigma Phi Epsilon Educational Foundation; a $2,500 U.S. savings bond from the dictionary publisher Merriam-Webster; reference works from Encyclopaedia Britannica valued at $2,600; and a lifetime membership to Britannica Online Premium and a Nook eReader and online course from K12 Inc.

Categories: KUSI