By: Michelle Kinsey, Community Engagement Coordinator, WIPB-TV—
Muncie, IN—After 40 rounds, Burris Laboratory School fifth-grader Alesya Rathinasamy was named the champion Saturday of the third WIPB-TV Spelling Bee.
Nearly 60 school champions from Delaware, Jay, Blackford, Randolph, Madison and Henry counties competed this year in Sursa Performance Hall, on the campus of Ball State University.
The first runner-up was Andrew Toney of Lee L. Driver Middle School in Winchester. Second runner-up was Samori McKell-Jeffers from Royerton Elementary School.
Rathinasamy will now go on to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in May in Washington, D.C.
Rathinasamy has competed in all three WIPB Spelling Bee competitions. She placed second in the first bee in 2016. She finished third in 2017.
WIPB broadcasted the regional bee LIVE. You can watch a recording of that broadcast at www.wipb.org.
Pronouncer was BSU English professor Lynne Stallings. Judges were Stephanie Wiechmann, host of Indiana Public Radio’s “All Things Considered” and Monique Armstrong, Program Director for TeenWorks in Muncie and Indianapolis. Recorder was Kamna Agarwal, occupational therapist a long-time spelling bee coach.
Last year’s WIPB Spelling Bee champion was Caleb Roberts, a student at Heritage Hall Christian School, who won this area’s longest bee in recent history by spelling the word “perpend.” The champ in 2016 was Samantha Academia, who was a student at Yorktown Middle School.
Ball State University Teachers College generously contributed the funds to cover the Scripps fees for schools to participate. Presenting sponsor of the 2018 WIPB Spelling Bee was Family Vision Care.
Other sponsors include Avila Orthodontics, Dr. Leland C. Wilhoite DDS, MutualBank, Boyce Systems, MITS and Navient.
Below is a list of all of the students who competed in the WIPB-TV Spelling Bee this year:
Christina Sowinski – Union City Jr./Sr. High School
Kyleigh Markwell Westlawn Elementary School
Claire Hummel – Willard Elementary School
Darian Seale – South View Elementary School
Camren Hill – Montpelier Elementary School
Asher Moystner – Deerfield Elementary School
Madison Fridley – Pendleton Heights Middle School
Sarah Glunt – Randolph Southern Elementary School
Samori McKell-Jeffers – Royerton Elementary School
Dametrius Hull – Heritage Hall Christian School (middle)
Rylee Dunica – North Side Elementary School (Hartford City)
Chloe Wicker – Union Elementary School (Modoc)
Lukas Sullivan – Alexandria-Monroe Intermediate
Stacey Glunt – Randolph Southern Jr./Sr. High School
Guinevere Robertson – Monroe Central Elementary School
Elijah Stephens – West Jay County Middle School
Jade Nuckols – Redkey Elementary School
Robert Berger – St. Lawrence Elementary School
Caleb Cunningham – Heritage Hall Christian School (elementary)
Sophie Tuite – East Washington Academy
Lucy Arnold – Homeschool Explorers (middle)
Calypso McAlister – Northside Middle School
Daisy Muhlenkamp – Bloomfield Elementary School
Alesya Rathinasamy – Burris Laboratory School (elementary)
Natalie Mann – Selma Elementary School
Tyler Cadle – Selma Middle School
Ethan Klinger – West View Elementary School
Erin Kelley – Yorktown Elementary School
Brandon Isler – Delta Middle School
Zackary Fulk – North Side Elementary School (Union City)
Jayden Harrell – Judge Haynes Elementary School
Radley Richman – Wes-Del Elementary School
Kaleb Day – East Elementary School (Pendleton
Jayden Sorrell – Maple Ridge Elementary School
Ian Forster – Liberty Christian Elementary School
Blake Kahlig – East Elementary School (Portland)
Christopher Rench – Eaton Elementary School
Grace Brewster – East Jay County Middle School
Victor Garrett – Cowan Jr./Sr. High School
Lexii Upchurch – Homeschool Explorers (elementary)
Brady Monsivais – Union Jr./Sr. High School
Raphael Sabijon – St. Pope John Paul II Middle School
Trooper Bullock – Albany Elementary School
Allie Trimble – Cowan Elementary School
Kellsy Franklin – North View Elementary School
Shae Punzal – St. Mary Elementary School
Abigail Fouts – Yorktown Middle School
Madisyn West – Wes-Del Jr./Sr. High School
Jaylon Smith – Grissom Elementary School
Avery Barbosa-Hayes – Pendleton Elementary School
Andrew Toney – Lee L. Driver Middle School
Hannah Cain – Frankton Elementary School
Aubrey Dillon – Blue River Valley Elementary School
Kaden Greiner – Burris Laboratory School (middle)
Maela Cole – Southside Middle School
For more information about the WIPB Spelling Bee, contact Community Engagement Coordinator Michelle Kinsey at (765) 285-5887 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) affiliate, WIPB-TV is licensed to Ball State University and serves nearly 1.5 million people in east central Indiana and western Ohio. WIPB endeavors to educate, entertain and engage the communities we serve through distinctive television programs and enriching community engagement. For more information call 800-252-9472 or visit WIPB online at http://www.wipb.org.