While it means nothing or zero, Jah-Haile Bruce got a lot more out of the five-letter word when he recited the correct spelling in round 29 of the Guy Benjamin School spelling bee.
Twenty-two students in grades 1 through 3 went head-to-head on Monday morning, February 26, vying for a chance to compete in the district primary school spelling bee in St. Thomas in April and Bruce was the last one standing.
After the first eight rounds, the field dwindled to third graders Bruce and LaTiah Jackson who stayed neck-in-neck for the rest of the competition.
Jackson almost had the win in round 11, but couldn’t come up with the correct spelling of the word “hurricane.” The Coral Bay student had another chance to clinch victory in round 14 but lost on “yowl.”
Tide Turned in Round 19
The tide turned in round 19 when Jackson missed on “naval” while Bruce spelled out “subway.”
The competition continued, however, as Bruce failed to correctly spell “resort.”
The two battled it out for the next nine rounds when Jackson failed to spell “eureka” in round 28. After Bruce correctly spelled “hinge,” there was only one word between him and the district bee.
“Z-I-L-C-H,” recited Bruce as he topped the competition and secured his berth in the St. Thomas/St. John district spelling bee next month. Jackson will also attend the regional competition and will fill in if Bruce is unable to attend.