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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, June 1, 2006

'Obtundent' spells end for 'Ewa Beach girl

Video: See an interview with Jasmine Kaneshiro

By NICOLE GAUDIANO
Gannett News Service

Jasmine Kaneshiro, 14, climbed to Round 4 yesterday in D.C.

BILL CLARK | Gannett News Service

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ON TELEVISION

What: Scripps National Spelling Bee

Where: Washington, D.C.

When: Today

TV: The preliminary championship round will be televised at 6 a.m. today on ESPN.

The finals will be televised from 8-10 p.m. today on KITV 4.

Learn more

Scripps National Spelling Bee: www.spellingbee.com

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WASHINGTON Jasmine A. Kaneshiro of 'Ewa Beach was brought down by one letter in the fourth round of the Scripps National Spelling Bee yesterday.

The word: "obtundent," which means "an agent that blunts pain."

Her spelling: "o-b-t-u-n-d-a-n-t."

"I should have known that word," she told her father after the round.

Her mother, Renee, said, "She's trying to put it in a box. It's hard."

An eighth-grader at Hawaii Baptist Academy, this was Jasmine's last year to compete. She was the only contestant from Hawai'i. Last year, Jasmine said she made it to the third round and tied for 72nd place.

"I really wanted to be on TV, but I'm OK because at least I did better than last year," she said.

Earlier, she correctly spelled "rendezvous," which means a meeting at a prearranged time and place, and during the first oral round, she quickly breezed through "cnidarian" without asking a question.

"I knew the word," she said later.

She scored 18 out of 25 on the first-round written test three fewer points than her score on last year's written test but enough to advance.

For making it to Round 4, she goes home with a $175 cash prize. All spellers are given a commemorative watch, a $100 series EE U.S. savings bond and other gifts. Jasmine was sponsored by The Honolulu Advertiser.

The winner of the Scripps National Spelling Bee will bring home $30,000 in cash prizes.