It’s A Tie! National Spelling Bee Ends With Co-Champions For Third Straight Year

After correctly spelling “feldenkrais” and “gessellschaft,” Nihar Janga and Jairam Hathwar were declared winners of the 2016 Scripps National Spelling Bee.


For the third straight year, the Scripps National Spelling Bee has ended in a tie.

Nihar Saireddy Janga, 11, of Austin, Texas, and Jairam Jagadeesh Hathwar, 13, of Painted Post, New York, were declared co-champions Thursday night after what seemed like countless rounds of correctly-spelled words.

The fifth grader and seventh grader, respectively, spelled “feldenkrais” and “gessellschaft” correctly to win the championship.

Other words they spelled correctly included “haab,” “phulkari,” “groenendael,” “euchologion,” “euchologion,” “kjeldahl,” “pavonazzetto,” “guignolet,” “juamave,” and “zindiq.”

This is the ninth year in a row that an Indian-American has won the competition and the third straight year that the competition has ended in a tie.

Nihar Saireddy Janga of Austin, TX, leaps for joy upon spelling the last word to become a co-champion.

Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

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