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Branch takes 2nd in Regional Spelling Bee

Carl Branch of Alexandria was the runner-up in the Region Spelling Bee. He advanced to the Multi-Region Spelling Bee to be held in Fergus Falls on March 8.

Carl Branch, an 8th grader at Discovery Middle School in Alexandria, earned second place in the Region Spelling Bee held Tuesday, February 22. Students from 26 schools participated in the event.

By the end of the seventh round, five spellers remained. Those five matched spelling prowess until round 16 when Niles Hagen, an 8th grader from Osakis, became the champion when he correctly spelled "guilder" and "apos-trophe."

Branch was the final speller to challenge Hagen through 15 rounds until he misspelled "semolina."

Some of the words that Branch spelled correctly to earn the second place honor were rucksack, isobar, gon-dola, topography, cryptic, influenza, castanets, asterisk, misanthropy, machismo, schnauzer, alleviate and con-sensus.

Branch and Hagen will both attend the Multi-Region State Spelling Bee on March 8 in Fergus Falls. At that bee, one champion will be named who will advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.