Judges at a California spelling bee mistakenly told a 12-year-old competitor she'd spelled a word wrong, when she'd actually spelled it right.
Last Friday, Sierra Shoemaker spelled the word "braille" correctly at the Selma School District Spelling Bee. But the judges told her she was wrong and disqualified because the answer key had the word spelled with just one L.
"I didn't want to say anything because when the word master tells you you've got a word wrong you don't really want to argue with him," Shoemaker told broadcaster KMPH.
"So, I was shocked. I kind of just said 'What?' I looked around at the audience and half of them were looking at each other murmuring."
She was awarded second place, and contest officials called her later to inform her she'd get a second chance and be eligible to compete in the Fresno County Spelling Bee on Thursday.