NAPT Mohegan Sun High Roller Bounty Shootout: Mercier Matches Selbst, Goes Back-to-Back

Jason Mercier

The 2011 North American Poker Tour Mohegan Sun High Roller Bounty Shootout concluded on Thursday, and much like the Main Event on Wednesday, it was déjà vu. Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier, last year's NAPT Mohegan Sun Bounty Shootout champion, was back at it. Having watched Vanessa Selbst repeat as Main Event Champion the day before, there was no doubt that Mercier looked to do the same, but he had to get through an impressive bunch to do so.

Here is how the seating assignments looked for the final table.

1Taylor von Kriegenbergh2
2Joe Sweeney6
3Micah Raskin3
4Michael Pesek2
5Eugene Katchalov4
6Jimmie Guinther3
7Scott Blackman4
8Jonathan Jaffe2
9Jason Mercier7

Bounties were kicked up to $10,000 at the final table, having been $2,000 each at the first flight of tables. Also up for grabs was an additional $20,000 and automatic entry into the next NAPT bounty shootout for the player who won the most bounties. Aside from that, a first-place prize of $142,600 was on the line.

The first to drop at the final table was Joe Sweeney, shoving with 98 on a K95 board and running smack into Eugene Katchalov's A2. Sweeney did not find the miracle suckout and exited in ninth place. Micah Raskin hit the rail next after his 1010 fell to Jonathan Jaffe's QQ. Scott Blackman busted in seventh place after losing in a three-way pot with AQ against Jimmie Guinther's Q9 and Michael Pesek's AK. The board ran out 973JK as Pesek hit the river to cripple Guinther and end Blackman's tournament. A short-stacked Guinther, with K8, was finished off by Pesek's pocket deuces a few hands later and took sixth place.

The cruelest hand of the final table occurred with five left as Taylor von Kriegenbergh held 55 and looked to eliminate Eugene Katchalov and his AA. The 973 flop was harmless, but von Kriegenbergh spiked the lead when the 5 turn left Katchalov two outs to survive. On cue, the A popped off and left von Kriegenbergh short-stacked, busting a few hands later at the hands of Michael Pesek. Jonathan Jaffe was the next to go when his A9 ran into Jason Mercier's AQ. A clean board for Mercier ended Jaffe's day with a fourth-place finish.

Michael Pesek fell in third place after his A6 failed to hold against Eugene Katchalov's A5 when the board came down AQ57K. The heads-up play chip counts between the two Team PokerStars Pros began as follows:

Mercier: 269,600
Katchalov: 180,400

It did not take long for the chips to get in. On a 987 board, Mercier held 109 for top pair and an open-ended straight draw while Katchalov tabled 87 for bottom two pair. The turn brought the 3 and kept Katchalov in the lead, but the river delivered the knockout blow in the form of the 10 to give Mercier a better two pair to take it down. For his runner-up showing, Katchalov earned $66,000.

Final Table Results

1Jason Mercier$246,600
2Eugene Katchalov$68,000
3Michael Pesek$70,000
4Jonathan Jaffe$54,000
5Taylor von Kriegenbergh$44,000
6Jimmie Guinther$42,000
7Scott Blackman$44,000
8Micah Raskin$46,000
9Joe Sweeney$52,000

What more can you say about Jason Mercier? Having won six bounties at his first table and another three at the final table to win the most bounties, Mercier collected a cool $246,600 for his performance in the 2011 NAPT Mohegan Sun Bounty Shootout. More impressive, though, is his repeat performance as champion, capping an amazing week at the Mohegan Sun as both major events were won by last year's respective champions.

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