One of the best bets for a Northeast Ohio sporting championship this year comes in the form of a 14-year-old from North Royalton. With a lot of skill, even more studying and a little luck, Anamika Veeramani may make it to compete on ESPN this Friday morning and on ABC Friday night.

The event is spelling. Ohio’s drought has been long. The last time an Ohioan won the Scripps National Spelling Bee was in 1964, which was also the last time the Browns won an NFL championship. That year’s winner was a kid from Akron, William Kerek, who grew up to be a doctor.

This year’s national bee, the 83rd, starts today when nearly 250 of the nation’s top young spellers — and a few from around the globe — take a written spelling test in the bowels of a large Washington hotel. They made it this far by winning in local and regional spelling bees.

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