05/31/2012 05:21 EDT | Updated 07/31/2012 05:12 EDT

Last Canadian In Scripps Spelling Bee Eliminated


A 12-year-old spelling bee whiz from St. John's came close to victory on Thursday at the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Maryland.

Jennifer Mong was one of 50 students who made it to the semifinals but she was eliminated after incorrectly spelling “vellon.”

Mong added an "e" to the end of the word.

According to Merriam-Webster, the official dictionary of the spelling bee, “vellon” is defined as debased silver, especially when alloyed with considerable copper.

Mong made it to the sixth round after correctly spelling "lymphopoiesis" which is related to the formation of white blood cells.

Mong was one of only two Canadians — the other was 12-year-old Mignon Tsai of Abbotsford, B.C. — to advance to the semifinals. Tsai didn't make it out of the fifth round when she was tripped up by "macropodid."

There were 278 spellers competing for the title. They were reduced to 50 for the semifinals, and to nine who made the final round.

In March, Mong qualified for the Scripps National Spelling Bee by winning the 2012 Postmedia Canspell National Spelling Bee.

The event aired on CBC’s Spelling Night in Canada.

Her Canadian title came with a $7,500 prize.

Mong is a student at MacDonald Drive Junior High in St. John's.

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Photo gallery 2012 Scripps National Spelling Bee See Gallery