Caitlin Cook

Sunny Levine’s bid to capture the title of top speller in the nation has survived the preliminary rounds.

She successfully spelled two words Wednesday. In combination with her written test score from Tuesday, Sunny advances with 49 other spellers to this morning’s semifinals.

Sunny, sponsored by the Akron Beacon Journal, correctly spelled “Mistassini” — a geographical reference to a Canadian waterway — in Wednesday’s third round. Earlier in the day she spelled “dermotactile” — a term related to skin sensitivity.

Nathan Dugan, from Canton Local’s Faircrest Middle School and sponsored by the Canton Repository, also spelled his words correctly in the second and third rounds. They were “cantankerous” — someone who is difficult or irritating to deal with — and “schottische” — a slow dance resembling a polka.

His journey ended there, however, based on his overall score.

A 13-year-old student from Claggett Middle School in Medina, Sunny is making her third — and final — appearance in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.

Today’s semifinal round starts at 10 a.m. and will air live on ESPN2.

A national champion will be determined in the final round, to be aired live on ESPN at 8 tonight.