Kush, a seventh-grader at Frontier School of Innovation beat fifth-grader Sophia Hoffman, 11, of Highland Park Elementary to win Missouri County’s annual bee contest on Saturday, before a packed Kansas City Public Library. Hoffman missed out after she mis-spelt  the word ‘Stifling’.

The contest had to be extended after Kush and Hoffman, blew through the word list at the Jackson County Spelling Bee and the 20 additional words selected from a dictionary. The tie was officially broken after another 29 rounds.

Sophia said she was excited for making it so far in the competition and planned to compete again next year.

Indian-Americans have dominated the contest over the years. New York student Arvind Mahankali won the 2013 Scripps National Spelling Bee.


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