DALE CITY, Va. - Forty-eight students competed in the Prince William Regional Spelling Bee for a chance to qualify for the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
The competitors who took part of this event at George M. Hampton Middle School in Dale City were from elementary and middle schools in Prince William County as well as the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park.
After three-and-a-half hours, 12-year-old Aditya Chezhiyan won Friday night's competition by spelling toxicosis for his final word.
"When I won the spelling bee, I was just overwhelmed," said Chezhiyan, a seventh grade student at Marsteller Middle School in Bristow. "My dream was to make it to the nationals if I could even win. But I had never made it this far ... To actually win it, I just feel amazed."
His preparation of looking over countless words and taking many quizzes were a big part in giving him the confidence to win the spelling bee.
"Well, I didn't necessarily know I was going to win, but I had confidence that I was going to win," said the 12-year-old. "Some of the challenges I faced when I came across a word I didn't know, I had to restudy that word and sometimes it would take a lot of time just to get one word down."
With his victory, Chezhiyan will take part in the Scripps National Spellling Bee in May, which will be held at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Maryland. The competition will be televised nationally on ESPN.