Finally, after nearly 14 hours of play, both Day 1a and Day 1b of the Main Event have concluded here at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe. Your overnight chip leader is Robert Hancock who bagged 135,800 chips. Joining him at the top of the counts are Jeff Rubie, David Clark, Steve Foutty, and Tom Masinter, all of whom have over 110,000 chips.
A total of 416 players registered for Day 1a, Day 1b, or both. That’s a 27 percent increase from last year’s event, and registration is still open for those willing to enter Day 2 with an extremely short stack. A total of 106 players survived Day 1a, and approximately 60 survived Day 1b. The two fields will combine tomorrow.
En route to the chip lead, Hancock was unafraid to battle some of the bigger stacks in the room. John Song, who was the chip leader of Day 1a for a few levels, butted heads with Hancock during Level 11. The two took a flop of , and Song checked to Hancock who fired 4,200. Song called. The turn was the , both players checked, and the completed the board. Song led out for 5,200, and Hancock quickly raised to 20,200. Song folded, and Hancock tabled face up.
Ryan Olisar ended Day 1b among the leaders, and had a roller coaster day. At one point, he doubled an opponent holding two sevens and then doubled with sevens the very next hand. Olisar flopped a set on a board of , his opponent called all-in with two nines, and the turn and river came , respectively. Olisar shipped the 90,000-chip pot, and finished the day with 111,800.
Joining Olisar on Day 2 will be Ylon Schwartz, Cylus Watson, JC Tran, Howard “Tahoe” Andrew, Jesse Rockowitz, and other notable players.
Among the players who fired two bullets and busted twice were David Williams and Tommy Vedes. We missed both of Vedes’ bustout hands, but on Williams’ second bustout hand he squeezed over a raise and two calls. Two players called the all in, and the checked it down as the board ran out – or so it seemed. Despite making a checking motion, one of the players fired a bet on the river. The other folded, Williams showed , but it was no good against his opponent’s .
Kevin Calenzo was not eliminated during play on Saturday, but he was crippled during Level 12. Calenzo opened from under the gun, the player on his direct left called, and Exequiel Fernando moved all in for 21,000 in middle position. Calenzo re-shipped, the player on his left folded, and the hands were opened:
Calenzo had Fernando crushed, but the flop gave Fernando three direct outs to double up. The spiked on the turn, giving Fernando a full house, and only the case ace would eliminate him from the tournament.
The bricked on the river, and Fernando more than doubled to 45,000 chips. Calenzo bagged 17,500 chips.
Here’s how the top ten looks:
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