2 North Dakotans Compete in Scripps Nat’l Spelling Bee

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md – The 2019 Scripps National Spelling Bee is here, and North Dakota has two representatives.

Eighth graders Chris Fleig from Dickinson and Annaliese Rauschenberger from Minot advanced to the third round of competition.

Each talk about the way they felt coming into this spelling bee.

“It feels really crazy, like I didn’t think this was going to happen and it’s been really fun so far,” Rauschenberger explained.

“I am very grateful and also very excited and very nervous,” Fleig said.

This year is the largest spelling bee contest in history with 562 participants.

With this competition being on the national stage, nerves can get the best of any speller.

Rauschenberger and Fleig explain how they prepared for the competition.

“I kind of review with my dad. He pronounces it then I spell the words,” Rauschenberger said.

“I just looked over my words. I make sure that I didn’t miss anything,” Fleig said.

And when it was time for Rauschenberger and Fleig to spell, they each had one thing on their minds.

“I’m definitely nervous because if you misspell here, you’re out,” Rauschenberger said.

“If I spell this word right, I may end up going to the finals, which is really big,” Rauschenberger said.

Rauschenberger had to spell lugubrious while fleig had to spell dissuade.

Both contestants were part of the 293 participants that spelled their word correctly. Unfortunately, they did not make it to the finals, along with Gavin Starr from Lester Prairie, Minnesota, who did not spell his word correctly.

Even though both spellers from North Dakota made it this far without a verbal mistake, neither of them made it to the finals.

Categories: Local News, North Dakota News