World Poker Tour L.A. Poker Classic Day 3: DeWitt Leads as Money Bubble Bursts

Jason DeWitt

Another day of play wrapped up on Sunday at the 2011 World Poker Tour L.A. Poker Classic Main Event. This time around it was Day 3, which took about 13 hours. When the day began, 238 players returned planning to make it down to the final 63 and the money. That goal was reached at about 1:30 a.m. with the elimination of Hoyt Corkins on the bubble. Going into Day 4, Jason DeWitt leads the pack with 1,023,000 in chips.

Plenty of notable players returned to play for the $1,654,120 first-place prize including Andrew Lichtenberger, Shane Schleger, Andy Frankenberger and Erik Seidel, but all four hit the rail in the first level of the day. Kara Scott, Mike Matusow and Freddy Deeb fell in the second.

Deeb was eliminated by Tom Braband in a big, three-way all-in while Matusow was sent packing by Jon Turner. After some preflop action on the flop of {10-Spades}{8-Diamonds}{3-Hearts}, Matusow moved all in for 46,500 and Turner snapped him off with the {a-Spades}{a-Clubs}. Matusow held the {k-Hearts}{10-Diamonds}. The turn and river were the {9-Hearts} and {3-Clubs}, respectively, and Matusow was eliminated.

Another notable player who hit the rail during Day 3, Phil Hellmuth, was eliminated by Chad Batista. After a player opened to 6,000, Batista three-bet to 22,000. Hellmuth moved all in for 42,000 and the first raiser folded. Batista made the call and tabled the {a-Diamonds}{10-Clubs}. Hellmuth was in dominating shape to double up holding the {10-Diamonds}{10-Spades}. The board ran out in Batista’s favor as it came {j-Spades}{5-Clubs}{5-Spades}{a-Clubs}{8-Hearts} and he spiked his three-outer to send Hellmuth out the door.

In Level 17, Jason Mercier saw his tournament come to an end. He moved all in from the small blind with the {a-Clubs}{8-Diamonds} against Mike McClain in the big blind. McClain called with the {a-Spades}{10-Diamonds} and the board ran out {a-Diamonds}{9-Clubs}{7-Spades}{q-Hearts}{j-Hearts}.

The bubble hand occurred when Corkins got all his money in with the {q-Clubs}{q-Spades} against the {k-Hearts}{k-Clubs} for Mike Sowers. No help came for Corkins as the board ran out {j-Spades}{8-Diamonds}{5-Spades}{4-Spades}{6-Hearts} to put everyone in the money and end the day after two hours of hand-for-hand play.

One of the largest stacks moving onto Day 4 is Team PokerStars Pro Richard Toth from Hungary. Not only did Toth make hands and get paid off when he needed to, he also got his opponents to make some pretty big laydowns against him.

On one particular hand, the flop read {10-Hearts}{9-Diamonds}{2-Diamonds}. Toth bet 13,500 into a pot of around 25,000. His opponent put in a raise to 52,000. Toth came back over the top of him with an all-in move. His opponent was faced with a decision and had approximately 140,000 in chips behind after he raised Toth. The player tanked for a bit before folding the {q-Diamonds}{q-Hearts} face up for all to see. From there, Toth went on to finish the day with 993,000 in chips.

The chip leader, DeWitt, was the only player to finish with over one million in chips. He got to the seven-figure club after taking a pot from Allen Cunningham while hand-for-hand play was going on.

With a board of {a-Diamonds}{j-Spades}{7-Clubs}{q-Hearts}, DeWitt fired 39,000. Cunningham made the call to see the {9-Hearts} fall on the river and complete the board. DeWitt stayed aggressive and bet 87,000. His bet sent Cunningham into the tank for quite some time. He tanked for so long that eventually Tournament Director Matt Savage let Cunningham know he only had one more minute to act. Upon hearing this, Cunningham made the call right away but couldn’t beat the {a-Spades}{j-Diamonds} that DeWitt held for two pair, which sent DeWitt over the one-million mark.

Top 10 Chip Counts:

1Jason DeWitt1,023,000
2Richard Toth993,000
3James Carroll843,000
4David Baker702,000
5Mike Sowers677,000
6Shannon Shorr655,000
7Matt Berkey625,000
8Darryll Fish595,000
9Nikolay Evdakov583,000
10Carlos Mortensen557,000

Play will resume on Monday at 1:30 p.m. local time at the Commerce Casino in California. Everyone remaining in the field has locked up at least $22,230, but just squeaking into the money isn’t what it’s all about. Day 4 is sure to be another battle on the felt containing some great action from great players. Be sure to check back right here at PokerNews for the recap.

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