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Education News

Students From Conroe, Pearland Share Title As Co-Champions Of Houston Spelling Bee

It’s the third time Shobha Dasari wins as co-champion. For Siddharth Krishnakumar, it’s a brand new title.


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2015 champions
The 2015 Houston Public Media Spelling Bee co-champions pose with their trophies after 15 rounds. From left to right: Shobha Dasari from McCullough Jr. High and Siddharth Krishnakumar from Pearland Jr. High will compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Photo Credit: Craig Hartley


The region’s top spellers competed Saturday in the Houston Public Media Spelling Bee, the second largest local bee in the country.

Shobha Dasari
Shobha Dasari prepares to spell a word in the final round of the Houston Public Media Spelling Bee declaring her and Siddharth Krishnakumar co-champions. Photo Credit: Craig Hartley

Siddharth Krishnakumar
Siddharth Krishnakumar prepares to spell a word in the final round of the Houston Public Media Spelling Bee declaring him and Shoba Dasari co-champions. Photo Credit: Craig Hartley

The competition started with 55 students from across Southeast Texas. But after 11 rounds of spelling, it all came down to two students and eight final words.

Those words included eczematous, leishmanic and boutonniere.

Those two students, Shobha Dasari and Siddharth Krishnakumar, spelled all of those words correctly. With that, they became the newest co-champions of the local spelling bee.

For Shobha, it marks her third time winning the bee as co-champion.

For Siddharth, it was his first time at the Houston bee and a brand new title.

They were feeling a variety of emotions after the competition.

“Excited and exhausted,” Shobha said. “I can’t even talk anymore; I’ve spelled too much.”

“To me, it just means, like, my hard work paid off. I wanted to go to nationals and I guess I finally did,” Siddharth said.

To qualify for the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington D.C., they had to out-spell some tough competitors.

At one point, there were four final spellers who didn’t miss a single word during four separate rounds. Shobha said that was intense.

“I just knew that everybody there was a really good speller. So I was hoping to win again but I knew that if I lost I was at least losing to people who were like really good,” she said.

This will be her final year in spelling since she is in eighth grade at Conroe ISD and will be ineligible to compete next year in high school.

Siddharth is in seventh grade in Pearland ISD.

He said he’s planning to study from the dictionary more and also vocabulary to prepare for the national bee in May.

As co-champions, they will both represent Southeast Texas at the bee in Washington, D.C.


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