<p>Mary Alice Reporting:

(Tuesday, May 15th) New Philadelphia, Ohio – It came down to two words last week to determine the winner of an annual spelling bee.

The 8th Annual event sponsored by the Tuscarawas County Literacy Coalition ended in a showdown between two educators, one who appeared as Mary Poppins.

Ragersville and Baltic Elementary Principal Jeff Williams explains that he was able to keep calm when he faced Tamara Benson in the finale.

“And Tam misspelled the word “cuirass” and I only spelled it correctly because I looked at the list before the spelling bee started and happened to gaze at that word. Then I had to spell one more word, which was “conscientious” to win.”

Williams credits his coaches, 4th-grade Garaway students Benson Yoder and Regina Beach, for keeping him calm.

He points out that the spelling bee is a great event and benefits a worthy cause.

“The Literacy program brings literacy, bring books, bring supplies, and they have their traveling book hounds. Basically, they just push for reading in schools and any place that needs that assistance.”

Williams will return next year as the reigning champion.

Go to www.tuscarawascountyliteracycoalition.org for more information about the Tuscarawas County Literacy Coalition.

(Pictured: Williams and Runner-up Benson)

Copyright WTUZ Radio Inc., 2018