Spelling Bee champ look­ing to spell r-e-p-e-a-t

Imperial Valley Press - - LOCAL & REGION - BY MARIO REN­TE­RIA Man­ag­ing Edi­tor

EL CEN­TRO — Nathan Oster­mann, 12, will at­tempt to spell his way to back-to-back ti­tles at the Im­pe­rial County 13th an­nual Re­gional Spelling Bee.

The event, sched­uled to kick off at 6 p.m. to­day at South­west High School, will fea­ture 63 stu­dents from var­i­ous schools across the county look­ing for the cov­eted win.

“This event al­lows these stu­dents to show­case what they can do well. Some of our kids are great at lan­guage arts, and they’re great spell­ers. We should al­low them to show off what they can do,” said Im­pe­rial County Of­fice of Ed­u­ca­tion’s STEM Co­or­di­na­tor John Lazarcik.

Last year’s Spelling Bee pro­nouncer, Lazarcik will re­turn to that roll this year.

Oster­mann’s win last year came af­ter in­creased study­ing from pre­vi­ous years, af­ter com­pet­ing since the third grade.

“I felt like I stud­ied more, and I felt a lit­tle more con­fi­dent than I had pre­vi­ous years,” Oster­mann said. “I was ex­pect­ing a lit­tle bit more.”

Oster­mann is an avid reader, en­joy­ing fic­tional works like the Percy Jack­son and Harry Pot­ter se­ries. He’s also a swim­mer with the Im­pe­rial Val­ley Desert Aquatics.

Last year’s win also in­cluded a trip to Wash­ing­ton, D.C., to com­pete at the Scripps Na­tional Spelling Bee. He cor­rectly spelled Pinker­ton in the sec­ond round but in­cor­rectly spelled di­etetic in the third round.

“I was ner­vous, but I was just ready to en­joy it,” he said. “I wasn’t re­ally pres­sur­ing my­self to do much, so I was just there to have fun.”

The ex­pe­ri­ence in Wash­ing­ton was more than just the com­pe­ti­tion for Oster­mann.

“That was pretty cool. I got to see some mu­se­ums and Mount Ver­non where Ge­orge Wash­ing­ton lived,” he said.

This year Oster­mann said he’s pre­pared about the same as last year for the Spelling Bee.

“I hope to do well, and if luck may have it, I may be able to win again,” he said.


2018 Im­pe­rial County 13th an­nual Re­gional Spelling Bee

When 6 p.m. tonight Where South­west High School

Info Watch the Spelling Bee live at the Im­pe­rial Val­ley Press Face­book page @iv­press start­ing a few min­utes be­fore 6 p.m.

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