Two local students advance to Scripps National Spelling Bee semifinals

Two of Houston's top spellers are hoping to become the nation's top speller today.

Shobha Dasari, 14, of McCullough Junior High School in Spring and Siddharth Krishnakumar, 13, of Pearland Junior High West are both competing in the Scripps National Spelling Bee semifinals today.

Dasari made it through the preliminaries after correctly spelling the words apostrophe and epitasis, which is the main action of a play in classical drama. This is the third time the 8th grader has competed at the Scripps National Spelling Bee. She tied for 19th place in 2013 and tied for 32nd place in 2014. She hopes to one day become a medical researcher.

Krishnakumar made it to the semifinals after correctly spelling the words tsunami and trebuchet, which is a type of catapult from the Middle Ages. The 7th grader says his best subject in school is actually math, not spelling, and hopes to one day study robotics engineering at MIT.

PHOTOS: See how other spelling bee contestants reacted to their words

You can watch how both of our local spellings perform during the live semifinals this morning on ESPN 2. The semifinals begin at 9:00am.

If both spellers advance to the finals, you'll be able to watch them go for the title live on ESPN beginning at 7:00pm tonight.

Do you think you could compete in the spelling bee? Take the test here!
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