No more than 50 semifinalists will advance after today's second and third rounds of testing in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in the nation's capital.

Yesterday, all 273 contenders - including one apiece from Philadelphia, Camden, Lancaster, Bethlehem and Margate, as well as Montgomery, Delaware, Chester and Berks Counties - used computers to take a 50-word test.

Today, the students - ranging from age 8 to eighth grade - will spell onstage in two rounds, the first under way this morning, the second televised on ESPN3 starting about 1:15.

After the competition concludes about 5:15, a point system will determine who's still in the running to be crowned the new champ tomorrow night in Washington.

Tomorrow, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., up to 50 semifinalists will compete onstage, with ESPN televising. The top spellers will compete in the 8 p.m. finals on ABC.

The bee always attracts national attention, because it puts children through an intense test of brainpower and always boggles the minds of adults with words seldom heard or seen.

The last five winning words were appoggiatura, Ursprache, serrefine, guerdon and Laodicean.

For more on the contest, including contestant profiles, go to www.spellingbee.com.

TRI-STATE CONTESTANTS

In the list below, the number is the one the student will wear onstage, and unless indicated, the student is an eighth-grader.

Pennsylvania spellers

No. 203: Jaclin Alise Boorse, Norwood School, Norwood, Delaware County.

204: Priyanka Thirumurti, Moravian Academy, Bethlehem.

205: Joanna Ye, 7th grade, Lamberton Middle School, Carlisle, Cumberland County.

206: Monica L. Mede, Reynolds Middle School, Lancaster.

207: Neel Mehta, Arcola Intermediate School, Eagleville, Montgomery County.

208: Scott Stephen Salisbury, Chestnut Hill Academy, Philadelphia

209: Anna V. Wadhwani, Jefferson Middle School, Mount Lebanon, Allegheny County.

210: Quentin J. Moyer, Blue Mountain School, Orwigsburg, Schuylkill County.

211: Kyle C. Latshaw, 7th grade, Schuylkill Valley Middle School, Leesport, Berks County.

212: Neilesh K. Vinjamuri, Lionville Middle School, Exton, Chester County.

213: Sukanya Roy, 7th grade, Abington Heights Middle School, Clarks Summit, Lackawanna County.

New Jersey spellers

No. 145: Suzanne Lynne Greenwood, Tighe Middle School, Margate.

146: Vothom Son Lu, 6th grade, Cramer Elementary School, Camden.

147: Joshua G. Casquejo, West New York Middle School, West New York.

148: Jake Joseph Muldowney, Toms River Intermediate South School, Beachwood.

149: Karthik Reddy, 7th grade, Peck School, Morristown

150: Mariamma Susan Abraham, 7th grade, Crossroads North Middle School, Monmouth Junction.

Delaware Speller

No. 32: Pranay Choudary Malempati, 6th grade, Waters Middle School, Middletown

Contact staff writer Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or pmucha@phillynews.com.