Keen home-grown young spellers amazed judges and attendees with brilliance at the Lions Club of Grand Cayman and Education Services Spelling Bee finals at Mary Miller Memorial Hall last week.
Eleven students from Cayman Brac High School, Clifton Hunter and John Gray high schools, Montessori by the Sea and Wesleyan Christian Academy faced the audience with mikes in hand for a chance at spelling stardom.
But at the end of the fourth and final round, all eyes were on four top students who refused to back down from any word and took the judges on an elimination process to pick a winner for the prize -a laptop from LIME Network.
Words such as rhododendron, triptych, quinquennium, strychnine glockenspiel, cyanocobalamin, syzygy, phagocytosis and dynamism were thrown at spellers Katherine Tatum and Joel Gayle representing Cayman Brac High, and David Forbes and Shanique Randall from Clifton Hunter High, by spell master Marcia Muttoo, but no word seemed to faze the spellers as they quickly responded with the correct answers.
Finally, after one speller had to sit down, the judges agreed to call a halt to the competition and begged the audience to donate a laptop.
“We are not going no further, the three champion spellers are more than deserving. We have given them the hardest and most difficult words to spell we could find and these students have come out on top,” said judge Herbert Crawford.
The top winners were Katherine Tatum, Joel Gale and David Forbes. All three will receive a computer.
“Keep up the good work, some of those word that were given I can’t even pronounce,” said West Bay MLA Captain Eugene Ebanks as he congratulated the students on behalf of the himself and Premier McKeeva Bush.
The top winning schools were Clifton Hunter High, first place with 79 points; Cayman Brac High, 72 points (also the recipient of the Premier’s plaque); John Gray High, 54 points, and Montessori by the Sea, 53 points.