WSOP-C Council Bluffs, Day 2: Michael Martin, Bernard Lee Head Final
27 players returned to The Horseshoe at Council Bluffs, Iowa for Day 2 of the World Series of Poker Circuit series Main Event, with Howard Wolper leading the pack as play began. Players took barely five levels to work down to the final table, with local WSOP bracelet winner Bob Slezak setting the tone for a fast-paced afternoon when he busted on one of the day's very first hands.
Slezak and Mark Eddleman saw the flop of , and Slezak moved all in. Eddleman called with , and Slezak was in trouble with . No help arrived on the turn or river, and Slezak was busted before his chair was even warm.
Local favorite Tony Merksick was another early elimination when he ran into Bernard Lee. Merksick and Lee got it all in preflop with Merksick's A-Q against Lee's pocket eights. Merksick picked up an ace on the flop, but Lee went runner-runner to make a straight as the board ran out to send Merksick to the rail. Lee found himself short-stacked midway through the day, but hung on to pick up a ton of orphaned pots near the bubble and make his way through to the final table.
Late in the day, Lee found himself heads-up on a flop of with John Kincaid. Lee led out at the flop, and Kincaid went into the tank for a long time before moving all in over the top of Lee. Lee insta-called with , and Kincaid replied, "Good call, I got nothing," as he tabled . The turn and river missed Kincaid as Lee doubled through him. Not long afterwards, Kincaid found himself the short stack on the bubble and moved all in with . He found one caller in Nicholas Manganaro, who called with . The board missed both players, and Manganaro's A-Q-high held up to send Kincaid home in tenth place and burst the money bubble.
Kincaid's elimination left Michael "Martine23" Martin as the chip leader going into the final table, with Ron Koenemann and Day 1 chip leader Howard Wolper as the short stacks, and Michael Martin in the lead. The chip stacks and seating assignments looked like this as the final table was set:
Seat 1: Ron Koenemann - 43,000
Seat 2: Ben Hock - 122,000
Seat 3: Nicholas Manganaro - 75,000
Seat 4: Michael Martin - 214,500
Seat 5: Keith Murrell - 116,500
Seat 6: Samuel Shamburg - 117,000
Seat 7: Howard Wolper - 63,000
Seat 8: Dan Jensen - 83,500
Seat 9: Bernard Lee - 155,500