Speed Reads

no spell check needed

14-year-old Harini Logan wins 2022 Scripps National Spelling Bee

W-i-n-n-e-r.

Fourteen-year-old Harini Logan won the Scripps National Spelling Bee Thursday night after prevailing in the competition's first-ever 90-second spell-off.

Logan spelled 21 out of 26 words in the speed round correctly, while her opponent, 12-year-old Vikram Raju, managed just 15 out of 19, The New York Times reports.

The San Antonio native said her victory felt "so surreal."

"This is such a dream, this is my fourth bee and I'm just so overwhelmed," she went on. Logan was initially eliminated in the competition's word meaning round, only to be reinstated after the judges concluded her provided definition of "pullulation" was not actually incorrect.

"Harini getting out was horrible and unexpected," reigning Bee champion Zaila Avant-garde, 15, said of the near-elimination. "Everybody literally screamed when that bell rung."

Once back in the game, however, Logan breezed the competition, the Times writes, "confidently spelling words like charadriiform and tauromachian."

For her prize, the new spelling champion received a $50,000 check and a trophy. Raju, meanwhile, told Bee host LeVar Burton that he'd be back to try again next year.