ST. CLOUD (WJON News) -- A 7th grader from St. Cloud punched her ticket to the national spelling bee this week.

Resource Training and Solutions hosted the annual Central Minnesota Regional Spelling Bee at St. Cloud State University on Tuesday.

Forty students from around the region in grades five through eight competed for the opportunity to advance to the national championship. The competition ran 11 rounds and included a total of 156 words.

Leyla Jacobson, a student at North Junior High School, finished in first place. With the win, Jacobson advances to the 2024 Scripps National Spelling Bee which will be held in Maryland in late May.

Runners-up included 7th grader Zackary Heinen from the Eden Valley-Watkins School District in second place and 7th grader Eli Wood from the Sartell-St. Stephen School District in third place.

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