ZALIA AVANT-GARDE IS NAMED SPORTS KID OF THE YEAR FOR 2021

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Zalia Avant-garde’s star continues to rise and shine brighter than ever. The talented scholar and athlete has just been named SportsKid of the Year for 2021!Zaila Avant-garde is the 2021 SportsKid of the Year! A dazzling dribbler, a spectacular speller and a scintillating scholar: @Basketballasart can do it all https://t.co/Flq6IhUlKG pic.twitter.com/MTp9ntCsch— SI KIDS (@SIKids) November 24, 2021Zalia made history when she became the first African-American to win the National Scripps Spelling Bee.“Words are fun,” she said in her Sports Illustrated for Kids interview. “There are stories behind these words that make them super fun. It takes a lot of work [to be successful], but it’s really fun work.”The 14-year-old continued, “I’d be reading a book and be like, What’s this word? So I’d go to look it up into the dictionary. And you know how they have like the links that lead you to the next word? Yeah. That was my downfall. Suddenly a quick run to the dictionary for a minute turns into diving through whole histories of countries.”The word that clinched the title for Zalia was “Murraya;” however, spelling isn’t Zalia’s first love, that would have to be basketball.“Spelling is just a side thing I do,” Zaila says....

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