Birchwood’s Kasapoglu wins NP District Spelling Bee

Birchwood’s Kasapoglu wins NP District Spelling Bee

Birchwood Middle School student Yilmaz Kasapoglu squeezes the microphone after correctly spelling a word during the North Providence District Spelling Bee on Monday night. He was the eventual winner of the event when he spelled “sarcasm” correctly. (Breeze photos by Robert Emerson)

NORTH PROVIDENCE – Yilmaz Kasapoglu, a 7th-grader from Birchwood Middle School, went head-to-head with Birchwood 6th-grader Christian Archbold in the finals of the North Providence District Spelling Bee on Monday and came out on top.

Kasapoglu and Archbold went four rounds together as the final duo still standing. Archbold spelled “character,” “tithe” and “caribou” correctly before missing on the spelling of “imperative,” adding an “e” instead of an “a.”

Kasapoglu spelled “Spitz,” “yacht” and “elite.” After following Archbold’s misspelling of “imperative” with the correct spelling of that word, he clinched the win with the correct spelling of “sarcasm.” If he’d missed that word, the two finalists would have gone another round.

The middle school winner clapped his hands after each victorious round, eventually accepting congratulations from classmates and school administrators for winning the chance to represent North Providence in the Rhode Island State Spelling Bee. The bee, sponsored by The Valley Breeze, will be held Saturday, March 17, at 10 a.m. at Lincoln Middle School.

Archbold will serve as the alternate for the state bee if Kasapoglu can’t participate.

Along his path to victory Monday, Kasapoglu spelled “icicle,” “gunnysack,” “manicure,” “gorgeous,” and “retrospective” correctly.

Tom Meagher, principal at McGuire Elementary School, served as pronouncer for Monday’s North Providence Bee, using words in a sentence and giving students extra information, such as definitions or country of origin.

Kasapoglu took advantage of all clues in getting past the spelling of “Spitz,” settling on the correct spelling of the dog breed after Meagher told him the word’s country of origin is Germany.

Others participating in Monday’s bee were:

• 4th-graders Ibrahim Kah (Centredale), Lillian Watson (McGuire), Jayce Torres (Marieville), Lyndsie Lapierre, (Stephen Olney), Brayden Tetreault (Whelan) and Brooke Ciancaglini (Greystone).

• 5th-graders CJ Joaquin (Centredale), Devin Kelly (Greystone), Francesca St. Germain (McGuire), Arielle Bey (Marieville), Nicholas Boyle (Stephen Olney) and Andy Chu (Whelan).

• 6th-grader Charlotte Tobin (Ricci).

• 7th-grader Jailyn Medeiros (Ricci).

• And 8th-graders Christian Ciotti (Birchwood), and Chukwuebuka Osondu (Ricci).

Though 18 students started out on stage at North Providence High School, that number quickly dwindled, with three students eliminated in the first round.

There was plenty of heartbreak Monday for the town’s young standout spellers. The elimination of Whelan’s Chu from the competition drew gasps from the crowd, as many felt he had spelled the word he was assigned correctly after hearing it used in a sentence. Despite the confusion about the pronunciation and what, exactly, was being wheeled across the ground, the word Meagher said was “barrow,” not “barrel,” and Chu was out of the competition.

The contestants in Monday’s North Providence District Spelling Bee listen to instructions.
Spelling Bee contestant #1, Ibrahim Kah of Centredale Elementary School, competes in Monday night’s event. Kah made it through two rounds, spelling “vampire” and “academy” correctly before leaving the “w” off “bungalow.”
Yilmaz Kasapoglu, on the stage, poses with his family after winning the North Providence District Spelling Bee on Monday at North Providence High School. From left are sister Kayla, 4, dad Seref, and mom Hilal.
Christian Archbold, a 6th-grader at Birchwood Middle School, spells a word during the North Providence District Spelling Bee at North Providence High School on Monday night. He went on to become the runner-up in the contest when he misspelled “imperative.”


Nice story, Ethan. Fine young people, all and all are champions in their own right.