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updated: 5/31/2013 12:26 AM

Poll Vault: How would you do in a spelling bee?

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  • Pranav Sivakumar, 13, of Tower Lakes correctly spelled odontoloxia, Spenglerian, transrhenane, masoola, semainier, faconne, avellaneous, haupia on Thursday night in the finals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Pranav attends Barrington Middle School -- Station Campus.

      Pranav Sivakumar, 13, of Tower Lakes correctly spelled odontoloxia, Spenglerian, transrhenane, masoola, semainier, faconne, avellaneous, haupia on Thursday night in the finals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Pranav attends Barrington Middle School -- Station Campus.
    Associated Press

 
 

Pranav Sivakumar came a heck of a lot closer to correctly spelling "cyanophycean" than the rest of us would.

That's the word that tripped up the 13-year-old Tower Lakes boy Thursday night in the finals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, and he ultimately finished an impressive second out of 281 entrants.

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Cyanophycean pertains to a certain class of blue-green algae, but of course, you already knew that, right? Good thing, too, because this year's bee was the first to incorporate knowledge of vocabulary in the contest.

Have you ever won a spelling bee? Could you compete with the entrants in this year's bee, fielding words like "tokonoma," "haupia" and ptyalagogue"?

You can take a sample test on the Scripps National Bee website.

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