EDUCATION
06/01/2018 04:37 am ET Updated Jun 11, 2018

Karthik Nemmani Wins The 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee

The 14-year-old from McKinney, Texas survived one of the most intense competitions in the 93-year history of the spelling bee.

Karthik Nemmani, a 14-year-old from McKinney, Texas, correctly spelled the word “koinonia” on Thursday to win the 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee in National Harbor, Maryland.

In case you were wondering:

Koinonia is defined as “intimate spiritual communion and participative sharing in a common religious commitment and spiritual community.”

Nemmani’s face broke into a broad smile when Jacques A. Bailly, the bee’s official pronouncer, told him, “That is correct!” and confetti rained down on the stage.

Karthik Nemmani of Texas spelled the word "koinonia" correctly to win the 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Jack Gruber/USA Today Network / Reuters
Karthik Nemmani of Texas spelled the word "koinonia" correctly to win the 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee.

“I had confidence, but I didn’t think it would really happen,” the Dallas News quoted Nemmani as saying. It was his first national spelling bee.

Nemmani reached the finals because of a new rule called RSVBee, which allows some students to compete even if they didn’t win a regional or state bee, the Dallas News said.

Another student from North Texas, 12-year-old Naysa Modi of Frisco, came in second place. She tripped up on “Bewusstseinslage,” misplacing a couple of the word’s four S’s. This was her fourth national spelling bee.

The competition had its largest number of participants ever ― 515 ― and required eight rounds to get to the winner, USA Today reported.

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