SARTELL -- Both Sauk Rapids-Rice and the St. Cloud Area School District are sending students to the state spelling bee in two weeks.

Seventh-grader Lydia Johnson will represent Sauk Rapids-Rice -- for the second year in a row -- and eighth-grader India Ratha will represent District 742. The two emerged victorious from the morning session after 11 rounds and 71 words.

The afternoon session lasted 17 rounds and 103 words. Ava Marquette, an eighth-grader from St. Michael-Albertville Schools took first place with the winning word, "nucleotides." Lauren Rhode, an eighth-grader from Rockford Area Schools took second.

All four students will move on to the state bee in Fergus Falls on February 19th.


Photo courtesy of Resource Training & Solutions via Facebook.