14-year-old Karthik Nemmani wins Scripps National Spelling Bee

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Karthik Nemmani, an 8th-grader from McKinney, Texas, won this year’s Scripps National Spelling Bee after correctly spelling “koinonia,” a Greek word defined as “intimate spiritual communion and participative sharing in a common religious commitment and spiritual community.” The finals went 18 rounds. Naysa Modi, 12, of Frisco, Texas, took second place after leaving out the second “S” in the word “bewusstseinslage.” Modi had beaten Nemmani in their county spelling bee. There were 516 competitors in the national bee this year, ranging in age from 8 to 15 — the largest number in the history of the event. Nemmani, 14, won $40,000 in cash, a $2,500 savings bond, a set of encyclopedias, and a trophy.

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