The Pueblo West View

Sophia the first in spelling

CHIEFTAIN PHOTO/BRYAN KELSEN
Liberty Point International Middle School student Sophia Angeles, 13, is all smiles as she sits in the school's media center Wednesday afternoon in Pueblo West. The youngster took top honors in the Pueblo School District 70 spelling bee.
CHIEFTAIN PHOTO/BRYAN KELSEN Liberty Point International Middle School student Sophia Angeles, 13, is all smiles as she sits in the school's media center Wednesday afternoon in Pueblo West. The youngster took top honors in the Pueblo School District 70 spelling bee.

Liberty Point International eighth-grader Sophia Angeles made no slip in correctly spelling “Freudian” to win the Pueblo County District 70 spelling bee Tuesday night.

“When he said the word, I knew I could spell it,” said Sophia, who outlasted Beulah School seventh-grader Montana Russell for the district title.

Montana breezed through nine rounds of competition before she got caught up on the word “chiffonade.”

“I knew the word and I know how to spell it, I just completely forgot it,” said Montana.

Sophia and Montana were among 30 contestants from eight District 70 middle schools to vie for the district title and qualify for the state meet next month in Denver.

Sophia, who placed sixth at last year’s district competition, said the work she put in this year was key to her win.

“I prepared by studying, studying, studying,” said Sophia, daughter of Rick and Annalyn Rush. “I studied all last week and practiced spelling words on the way over here tonight.”

The practice showed as Sophia effortlessly spelled her way through words like “encryption,” “cephalopod,” “isochronous” “and smithereens” before spelling “Freudian” for the win.

“Every word I had to spell I heard of and had practiced spelling right before I got here,” she said. “I was prepared tonight.”

Montana, who was recovering from a concussion, said she, too, had put in a lot of practice for the bee and wasn’t surprised by any words she was asked to spell.

“A lot of the words I had seen before in books I just tried to remember how they were spelled.”

Sophia and Montana, along with third-place finisher Bryan Curtis of Swallows Charter Academy and Esai Martinez of Vineland Middle School, qualified for the state spelling bee scheduled for March 8 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver.

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