$1,500 Pot-Limit Hold’em Event #20, Day 1 – Jason Dewitt Tops Leaderboard
Day 1 of Event #20, $1,500 Pot-Limit Hold’em, drew a field of 633 entrants for the first World Series of Poker bracelet event on Tuesday afternoon. When played concluded after ten levels of play, the money bubble had just been burst. Jason Dewitt will return with a healthy chip lead when play resumes at 2pm PDT Wednesday.
With a starting stack of just 4,500, players seen leaving the tournament area in the early levels included Allen Cunningham, Gavin Smith, Justin Young, Humberto Brenes, Nikolay Evdakov, David “Devilfish” Ulliott, and Erica Schoenberg. Mark Seif made a big move in the right direction in one early hand, holding on the flop, as his opponent moved all in with . The turn and river blanked out, eliminating the opponent while Seif progressed to over 15,000 in chips.
After the second break of the day at the end of Level 4, over one half of the field had already departed, with Lee Watkinson, Clonie Gowen, T.J. Cloutier, Scott Montgomery, and defending champion David Singer among the players who walked away from the tables in disappointment. When the dinner break was reached at the end of Level 6 only 161 players remained, with 63 of those players destined to make the money. Jeremiah “Believer82” Vinsant led the field with 58,000 in chips, with Darryl Fish, Joe Sebok, Justin Scott, and Tracey Nguyen rounding out the unofficial top five.
As play moved into the later levels, Jason Dewitt rocketed to the top of the leaderboard, eliminating two players in large pots to accumulate 165,000 in chips. Roland de Wolfe moved up as well, when his pocket aces busted a player holding A-Q to build his stack to 84,000. The final level of play brought the money bubble, with Tracey Nguyen, Blake Cahail and Eric Baldwin among the players eliminated in the final hour of play.
The tournament staff elected to let the players reach the money before play ended for the evening. Mark Seif would burst the money bubble in one of the final hands of the night. On the flop of , his opponent bet 7,500, and Seif raised to 23,000. The other player went all in for an additional 7,700. Seif was pot-committed and called with. The all-in player turned over , with Seif drawing to a non-heart deuce or seven. The turn was one of Seif's four outs and the river brought no help, sending his opponent to the rail out of the money.
When the players return Wednesday at 2pm, Jason Dewitt will be the leader with 184,700 in chips, well ahead of his next-closest competitor, Jeremiah Vinsant, who is sitting on a stack 107,600. Nick Stowell closed out the day in third with 106,000. Other notables returning include Mark Seif (83,000), Phil Collins (65,100), Erik Seidel (61,400), Kathy Liebert (40,200), Roland de Wolfe, (40,000) and Mike Sexton (35,000).
$3,000 HORSE Event #21, Day 1 – Amereno Sprints to Front of Pack
Event #21, the $3,000 HORSE, started with a field of 452 entrants signing up for the mixed-game action on Tuesday afternoon. When play concluded after eight levels of play, 197 players still remained, with Rob Amereno emerging as the chip leader heading into Day 2.
The slow blind structure and the starting stack of 9,000 in chips had more players concerned about watching the game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Orlando Magic than the action at the poker tables. One notable exception was Jerry Buss, owner of the Lakers, who decided to play in this event rather than head to Orlando to watch his team in person. Eliminations were a rare occurrence in the early levels, with John D'Agostino and Jeff Lisandro two of the notable players departing the tournament room before the dinner break at the end of Level 4.
When the players returned from the break, Nikolay Evdakov was the unofficial leader with 21,000 in chips. Doyle Brunson and Jeff Madsen also possessed healthy-sized stacks upon returning from dinner. Jason Gray, Greg Raymer, Linda Johnson, Shannon Elizabeth, David Benyamine, and Robert Williamson III were less fortunate, joining the growing list of departed players as the blinds increased.
Mike Matusow, Vanessa Rousso, and Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi all hit the rail in the final level of play, their bracelet hopes dashed for the evening. Rousso made her exit in a stud hand, when her one pair with / / was felled by James Schaaf’s / /X for a full house. Soon after, the Grinder was ousted in a hold’em hand, when his lost a race to Billy Argyros’ pocket eights after Argyros made a set on the flop.
When the players entered their remaining chips into bags at the conclusion of play, Rob Amereno held the most chips with 96,800. Frank Debus finished a distant second (62,100), with Markus Golser in third chip position (52,500). Notables returning Wednesday at 2pm for Day 2 include: Andre Akkari (50,200), David Singer (48,700), Steve Billirakis (37,100), Barry Greenstein (34,300), Doyle Brunson (32,800), Chau Giang (29,800), and Jeff Madsen (23,800).
The final table is the desired Day 2 goal for the players and tournament staff. PokerNews will be following all the action at the World Series of Poker, so check back often for the latest in tournament updates!