“I-C-I-C-L-E, icicle,” Robert Wood,11, said into the microphone as he spelled out the winning word for the second year in a row at the Johnson County spelling bee.
The county spelling bee, held at Cleburne ISD Central Offices, involved nine CISD students and four from neighboring districts. Keene ISD fifth-grader Wood went up against Michael Lunn, a Wheat Middle School eighth-grader, for the spelling bee championship for just one round after other competitors failed to spell their words correctly.
Runner-up Lunn said although he seemed confident he was nervous before the contest.
“I was just so nervous, I hadn’t been in a spelling bee since the fifth grade,” Lunn said.
However, he was happy to go up against Wood. Before the spelling bee began, Lunn had a conversation with Wood and told him about how he also attended Keene Elementary School. They became instant friends.
“Before it began I just told Robert, ‘Man, you know, if I don’t win I want you to win,’” he said.
Before losing to the word “honcho,” spelling it with an “a” rather than in an “o” in round 17, Lunn spelled words like “occipital” and “lingua franca” correctly.
David Lunn said he was proud of his son no matter what.
“He’s always a winner in my heart,” he said. “He’s pretty confident and he should be because he’s put a lot of work and a lot studying to get this far.”
Wood, who wants to be a doctor when he grows up, spelled more strenuous words than winning word “icicle” — like “dodecahedron,” “illustrious” and “importunate.”
Wood said he definitely was not nervous about competing especially since he’s already done it before.
“I will say one thing ... it wouldn’t have been possible without God,” the 11-year-old said.