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County spelling bee winners announced

The Los Banos school district is abuzz with excitement after four of its students placed in the Merced County elementary and junior high spelling bees last week.

In the elementary school competition, the winning word was "secure" and the winners are:

1st place: Marsha Noeline, from Westside Elementary School

2nd place: T.J. Bangle, from Charleston Elementary School

3rd place: Kiara Gilardi, from Charleston Elementary School

The three students are all from the Los Banos Unified School District and beat out 82 other students for top honors. Noeline and Bangle will go on to compete in the California State Spelling Championship in Sonoma on May 16, 2009, with Gilardi as the alternate.

The winning word at the junior high spelling competition was "reciprocity" and the winners are:

1st Place: Marcus Carrillo, 8th Grader from Los Banos Junior High School

2nd Place: Vineet Singh, 8th Grader from Cruickshank Middle School in Merced

3rd Place: Brenda Cruz, 7th Grader from Harmony Elementary School in Delhi

Carrillo and Singh will go on to the California State Junior High Spelling Championship on May 9 in San Rafael. Cruz will be the alternate for that event.