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James Maravilla, a fourth-grade student at Federal Terrace Elementary School, earned top prize at the 42nd Annual Solano County Spelling Bee.

His winning word was “vengeance”.

Maravilla beat out a 6th grader from Vacaville in the nearly 2-hour competition—in total, there was just under 50 participants. Maravilla will now move on to the California Elementary Spelling Bee Championship May 12 at the San Joaquin County Office of Education in Stockton.

Maravilla admitted the event was both nerve-wracking and shocking.

“It was nerve-wracking because of the size of the audience, there was like 200-people watching me,” said Maravilla. “I spelled about 6 or 7 words right but  I was so focused on the spelling. Now I feel glory was in me after winning.”

Maravilla said he learned how to spell because his mom tested him everyday and learned to like spelling because it’s a challenge. His favorite subject, however, is science because he likes performing science experiments—his favorite experiment is testing earthquakes.

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