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WPT Jacksonville bestbet Open Day 1a: Mercier Mashes, Hernandez Leads

Jason Mercier

After a peaceful, five-hour drive from South Florida to Jacksonville for Day 1a of the Season XII: WPT Jacksonville bestbet Open, Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier bagged the third largest chip stack.

Mercier quickly accumulated chips after registering late to the $3,500 buy-in re-entry event. According to the WPT Live Updates Team, in Level 5 he called a three-bet preflop and check-called a bet of 4,000 on a flop of {k-Spades}{10-Spades}{2-Clubs}, and 5,000 after the turn was the {6-Clubs}. Mercier moved all in for 13,000 when the {8-Spades} fell on the river, and his opponent folded {a-Diamonds}{a-Hearts} face up.

Mercier ended the day with 167,500 chips, trailing only Greg Baumhover (193,100) and Lazaro Hernandez (212,200).

Hernandez lost a more than 50,000-chip pot in the final level of the night, doubling an opponent with top pair against a flopped set, but was still able to bag the largest stack in the room.

WPT Jacksonville bestbet Open

1Lazaro Hernandez212,200
2Greg Baumhover193,100
3Jason Mercier168,300
4Mike Arrington167,500
5Jonathan Little*141,500
6Dylan Wilkerson134,200
7Michael Palmer127,200
8Shannon Shorr118,200
9Marvin Rettenmaier*110,300
10James Calderaro*102,500

*Denotes that the player is a member of the WPT Champions Club

Thanks to the unlimited reentries, Day 1a attracted a total of 111 entries. Only 41 survived, but the unlimited reentry format extends to Day 1b.

Nobody fired more bullets than Marvin Rettenmaier, but the third bullet was the charm. The German WPT Champions Club member was finally able to run his stack up to 110,300 chips, bagging a top 10 stack. Several players fired two bullets.

Among the players to exit on Day 1a that may or may not reenter on Day 1b were WPT champions Jared Jaffe, Jordan Cristos, Mike Linster, Mohsin Charania, Matthew Waxman, the WPT's own Mike Sexton, and WPT Player of the Year leader Mukul Pahuja.

Pahuja fired out bullets on every street of a {j-Clubs}{5-Spades}{4-Diamonds}{a-Diamonds}{4-Clubs} board against Andrew Kelsall, and Kelsall moved all in for 19,000 on the river. Pahuja tank-called, then mucked when Kelsall tabled {j-Diamonds}{j-Hearts} for jacks full of fours.

Jaffee was eliminated by fellow Season XII Champions Club member James Calderaro on a flop of {7-Diamonds}{4-Hearts}{3-Clubs}. The former showed {10-Clubs}{10-Diamonds} for an over pair, but he was drawing against Calderaro's {4-Spades}{3-Spades}. The turn and river bricked off {j-Diamonds}, {q-Diamonds} respectively, and Jaffee hit the rail.

Day 1b kicks off at noon EST on Saturday. Be sure to check back to PokerNews after play is completed for a recap of the day's activities.

Data courtesy of the WPT Live Blog.

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