Courtesy: UAA Sports Information
ANCHORAGE – Now a 12-time All-American and four-time national champion, senior Micah Chelimo became just the third student-athlete in 30 years to repeat as the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Bill MacKay Athlete of the Year when he received the award at Seawolves’ 30th annual end-of-year banquet at Lucy Cuddy Hall on Friday night.
The Kapkoi, Kenya, native won the 3,000-meter race in a time of 8 minutes, 15.52 seconds at the 2014 NCAA Div. II Men’s Indoor Track & Field Championships last month in North Carolina, to go with a runner-up finish in the 5,000 meters (14:06.27). Those performances alone lifted the Seawolves to a 9th-place NCAA team finish and ran Chelimo’s total to four All-America honors in his two years of indoor eligibility.
Along with four awards each in cross country and outdoor track & field, Chelimo has the most career All-America honors of any male athlete in Great Northwest Athletic Conference history, and the second-most in UAA history, trailing only swimmer Jon Pauole (14, 1989-92). He joins Tobias Schwoerer (men’s Nordic skiing/cross country running, 2002 & ’03) as the only back-to-back winner of the MacKay AOY honor, and gymnast Teri Frankie (1986 & ’90) as a two-time recipient.
In addition to his heroics at nationals, Chelimo was voted the GNAC’s Male Indoor Track & Field Athlete of the Year for the second straight season. He scored 26 points at the GNAC Championships to secure a runner-up finish for the Seawolves, recording wins in the 5,000 and 3,000, plus a third-place finish in the one-mile race. Earlier in the year he also broke his own GNAC 5,000-meter record in 13:37.73.
The MacKay AOY award, sponsored by the Benton Bay Athletic Lions Club and UAA Athletics, is voted on by a committee of UAA Athletics staff, Benton Bay members and local media.
The other 2013-14 nominees were Karolin Anders (women’s indoor track & field), Dylan Anthony (men’s cross country), Matt Bailey (hockey), Stefany Bryan (gymnastics), Kylie Burns (women’s basketball), Marine Dusser(women’s skiing), Kyle Fossman (men’s basketball), Niko Harmanen (men’s skiing), Ruth Keino (women’s outdoor track & field), Joyce Kipchumba (women’s cross country), Cody Parker (men’s outdoor track & field) and Katelynn Zanders (volleyball).