US & World

Californians missing at spelling bee finals

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Can you spell “knocked out"? Tonight is the final round in the “Scripps National Spelling Bee." But California won’t have a single speller left on the dais.

Fifteen Californians, from Salinas to San Diego, qualified for the competition. Southern California’s brightest hope was Jeremiah Cortez from Glendale’s Eleanor J. Toll Middle School.

Cortez made it all the way to round six in the semi-finals.

California kids have won the competition three times in the last quarter century. The last win happened three years ago.

Cortez aced "pyroligneous," but he blew it with "favilla." In case you were wondering, that means a small incandescent fragment of lava from a volcano.