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National Spelling Bee names co-champions for the first time since 1962

The 2014 Scripps National Spelling Bee took place in the Maryland Ballroom at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland.
By Veronica Linares   |   May 30, 2014 at 7:39 AM  |  Updated May 30, 2014 at 11:37 AM   |   Comments

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BALTIMORE, May 30 (UPI) --Ansun Sujoe and Sriram Hathwar were named co-champions of Thursday night's National Spelling Bee.

The organization said in a tweet it was the first time since 1962 that two people shared the prize. Other ties occurred in 1950 and 1957.

After taking turns spelling words like augenphilologie, sdrucciola, thymelici, paixtle and encaenia, Sujoe, 13, ensured the tie when he spelled feuilleton correctly.

"I think we both know that the competition was against the dictionary, not against each other," Hathwar said of the win. "I am happy to share this trophy with him."

"I was pretty happy when I made the finals, and now I'm even happier that I'm a co-champion," added Sujoe.

For Hathwar -- a student of the Alternate School for Math and Science in Corning, New York -- this was the third time participating in the spelling bee. He finished third in 2013 and set a record as the bee's youngest speller when he entered at the age of 8 in 2008.

Sojoe -- a student at Bethesda Christian School in Fort Worth, Texas -- had also participated in the competition before.

The two were even congratulated by the President of the United Sates in a tweet.

"Congrats to Ansun and Sriram, the incredible co-champs of the #ScrippsNationalSpellingBee. You make us all proud! -bo," Barack Obama tweeted from the White House Twitter account.

The 2014 Scripps National Spelling Bee took place in the Maryland Ballroom at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland. The preliminaries began Wednesday and Thursday's final was broadcast live on ESPN.

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