Reigning Ladies champ out, Academy grad in

Mary Jones Meyer
Mary Jones cashes but doesn't repeat her Ladies Event win.

The women played down to the final nine last night and one of those left standing was a member of the World Series of Poker Academy Ladies Only class. It looks like Sally Boyer graduated from the class with honors.

She was one of five classmates who made it into the money of the 2007 WSOP Ladies No-Limit Hold'em event. Joining her were Cyndie Joy, Colette Ward, Dana Reutter and Michelle Lewis.

Boyer, who has only been playing poker for a year, didn't win her seat from the World Series of Poker Academy, but chose to wear its logo during the Ladies Event anyway. She said the class helped her immensely to get her to where she is now.

"It helped me amazingly. I have a lot more self confidence," she said. "It helped me with different strategy, pot odds. I worked on some table demeanor and habits - watching people and knowing what to look for in reading them."

Perhaps that's what helped all the pieces of Boyer's game come together to get her into the final table. When play got down to 10, she did express some concern about making it into the final nine because she was fairly short stacked.

However, she was able to pick a good spot to go all in and double up, helping ensure her a final table seat and at least $14,628 for ninth place.

On the play that doubled her up, everyone had folded down to Boyer and she was the small blind, and the big blind just checked her.

"And usually if she had a good hand she would raise, and so I sensed weakness in her," Boyer said. "I had a ten-eight and the flop came with a 10 in it. So I called her and she had worse cards than I did."

Of course, it wasn't just those last few women Boyer had had to survive to make the final table. A world-record making 1,286 women played in the event including several well-known pros and celebrities.

While some like former champion Jennifer Tilly, Karina Jett, Jennifer Leigh, Kathy Liebert, Marsha Waggoner, Clonie Gowen and Shannon Elizabeth were sent home before the money, former back-to-back champ Susie Isaacs as well as the reigning champion Mary Jones both made it deep to cash.

Today, Boyer will head into a final table that looks like this:
  • Seat 1: Vanessa Selbst with $345,000
  • Seat 2: Katja Thater with $340,000
  • Seat 3: Mindy Trinidad with $344,000
  • Seat 4: Kathy Giva with $147,000
  • Seat 5: Anne Heft with $277,000
  • Seat 6: Sally Boyer with $326,000
  • Seat 7: Julie Dang with $48,000
  • Seat 8: Frauke Ritter Von Sporschill with $523,000
  • Seat 9: Randi Calabro with $110,000
Boyer is hanging out right around the middle of the pack chip-count wise, and she's got a healthy fear of the chip leader.

But when asked how she plans to handle the final table, her response was to "just keep doing what I'm doing and play my game."

You can keep up with how the final nine ladies battle it out when the final table returns today to play at 2 p.m. (PST) by tuning in to the Live Tournaments Section.

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