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Wrapped in gingham: Spelling bee determines winner after 12 rounds


February 12, 2019

Havre Daily News/Ryan Berry

Sunnyside fifth-grader Sophia Purkett grows wide-eyed Monday as she is told she's won the Hill County Spelling Bee at Havre Middle School. After spelling the word "gingham," she was briefly told she was incorrect before the statement was reversed, making Purkett the champion.

The 53rd annual Hill County Spelling Bee went 12 rounds to finally determine a winner Monday morning inside the Havre Middle School Auditorium.

Fifth-grader Sophia Purkett from Sunnyside Intermediate School was pronounced the winner after she and Allie Messinger, an eighth-grader from Havre Middle School, and Colton Spicher, an eighth-grader from North Star School, had to play additional rounds because they all either misspelled their words or all spelled them correctly.

Purkett, after Messinger and Spicher were eliminated, correctly spelled "gingham" to earn the victory.

Purkett said th...

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