State spelling bee Saturday

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Michael J. Armijo II

Michael J. Armijo II, an eighth-grader from Sarracino Middle School, is Socorro County’s 2013 Spelling Bee champion.

Armijo was among the best 35 spellers from throughout the county who gathered at the Socorro District Courthouse to compete for a spot in the New Mexico Spelling Bee. After battling for 19 rounds, Armijo correctly spelled “synonym” to become Socorro’s representative in the state competition, which only takes the first place finisher from each county.

Jorrell Mirabel, of Magdalena, and Andrew Silva, a Sarracino eigthth-grader, rounded out the top three.

Armijo, who is a varsity member of the Warriors’ soccer and track teams, as well as a Sarracino Brave basketball player, attributes his spelling success to his lifelong passion for reading while admitting he does not get to spend as much time studying his spelling words, due to his schedule.

Armijo said as a Socorro County representative, he would be setting aside extra time to focus and study for the big show.

The New Mexico Spelling Bee will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday Sandia Preparatory School in Albuquerque. The New Mexico Spelling Bee champion will represent the state at the Scripps National Spelling Bee on May 30 in Washington, D.C.