Alaska sports digest: Nov. 20

Cary Marshall first appeared on the poker radar with a couple of strong finishes last summer in the annual World Series of Poker, finishing 13th in one event and 15th in another at the game's most lucrative and prestigious event to pocket nearly $39,000.

This week, the 62-year-old from King Salmon blew away those finishes and earned six figures.

Marshall won his first major title, the WSOP Circuit Main Event at Harrah's Harveys Lake Tahoe Casino in Stateline, Nevada, beating 421 other entrants in the No-Limit Hold 'em event to earn $139,260.

His victory in the event that required a $1,675 buy-in, or entry fee, also earned him a spot in the 2012-13 WSOP Circuit National Championship, May 21-23, in New Orleans.

Marshall began Monday as the chip leader among the 13 players left.

The final table featured nine players, and it took more than 12 hours to generate a champion.

By the time the field was trimmed to two, Marshall, who never lost the chip lead, faced Derrick Yamada of Sacramento, Calif.

Marshall went all in on what would be the final hand and Yamada called the bet. Marshall's straight -- 5-6-7-8-9, after the 5 landed on the river -- bested Yamada's three, or trips, jacks.

"I admit I got lucky a few times here to win,'' Marshall told WSOP media director Nolan Dalla. "I hit trips a few times at the right moment. And then on the final hand, I had a straight and I guess I got lucky that Derrick had trips that time and I got the call.''


UAA's Chelimo honored

UAA senior Micah Chelimo, who Saturday captured the Seawolves' first Division II national cross-country running championship, on Tuesday was named national men's athlete of the year by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.

Chelimo capped an undefeated season by winning the national title in Joplin, Mo., and he added to his national-championship bounty -- Chelimo won the 5,000 meters at the Division II national track and field championships last spring.

Chelimo in Saturday's nationals topped the field by 15 seconds in the race of 10,000 meters.

Anchorage Daily News