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Top spellers compete for county title
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The top spellers in the area will gather this week at the San Joaquin County Office of Education.

They’ll take part in the 2017 SJC Spelling Bee inside the Wentworth Education Center, 2707 Transworld Dr., Stockton, on Wednesday, beginning at 3 p.m. with the Elementary Division.

Those are the fourth- through- sixth-grade students, who will first take part in Monday’s spell-off event in order to advance to the finals.

All were winners at their respective school districts.

From Manteca Unified, Mapuana Toutai (fifth grade, Brock Elliott), Krishalyn Cabico (sixth grade, French Camp), and Christina Nguyen (sixth grade, Joshua Cowell) are hoping to move on. Ditto that for Ahmad Zaro (sixth grade, Ripona), Devin Fitzpatrick (sixth grade, Weston) and Andrew Rivera (sixth grade, Ripon Elementary) at Ripon Unified.

In the Junior Division – Wednesday’s Spelling Bee championships for the seventh- through- ninth grade students will follow the Elementary Division finals – Sean Melan (eighth grade, Joshua Cowell), Abigail Bautista (eighth grade, Joseph Widmer) and Ryleigh Yodong (seventh grade, August Knodt) from MUSD along with Ashley Dillman (eighth grade, Park View), Kenji Bangi (seventh grade, Colony Oak) and Garrett Castro (seventh grade, Ripon Elementary) from RUSD will be among the participants.

Ripon Christian schools will also have representatives in the two spelling bees.

The top two winners in each division will earn a plaque along with a Barnes & Noble gift card. More importantly, they’ll qualify for the state Spelling Bee in the spring.

The SJC Spelling Bee is being sponsored by Premiere Community Credit Union, SJCOE and the SJCOE Educational Foundation.


To contact reporter Vince Rembulat, e-mail