After 14 levels of play on Friday at the Mid-States Poker Tour Canterbury Park, David Abramowicz bagged 259,500 in chips to lead the 40 surviving players here on Day 1a. Abramowicz is a native Minnesotan, hailing from Sunfish Lake, and about half of his $85,000 in career cashes came in this very casino when he took down the $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em event at the 2010 Twin Cities Poker Open.
An MSPT Day 1a record 215 entrants bought in today, continuing an impressive streak by the tour. The MSPT broke state field-size records in Iowa and Wisconsin in its last two events.
Caleb Horkey (227,300), Boz Hanson (217,100), Lenton Phillips (182,800), and Jason Smith (176,200) trail Abramowicz in a relatively tight top five. Anthony Lazar (140,000), MSPT Player of the Year leader Kou Vang (139,800), Ryan Hohenstein (119,100), MSPT Pro Team member Blake Bohn (111,400), Jovan Sudar (92,300), and "Minnesota" Jon Hanner (70,500) were among others surviving the grind.
Day 1a Top 10 Chip Counts
Two huge pots aided Abramowicz's efforts as he bagged the top stack. In a battle of the blinds, the small blind bet 4,000 on a board and was raised by Abramowicz in the big blind. The small blind shipped it for about 75,000, and Abramowicz called.
The small blind had flopped trips, but he had work to do to catch Abramowicz's flopped boat. The didn't do it, and Abramowicz collected all but his opponent's last 300.
"Unbelievable," a player at the table muttered. "He plays any two cards, and he wins with any two cards."
Shortly after being moved to chip leader Jason Smith's table, Abramowicz doubled through him in an unknown hand to take the chip lead. We didn't see Smith's mucked cards, but Abramowicz held the on a board of , good for a straight on the turn. Smith sent 122,000 and the title of chip leader over to his opponent, and Abramowicz didn't relinquish it. Fortunately for Smith, he still had a very healthy stack and was able to build back up.
Players hitting the rail included "Wild" Bill Romer, Matt Kirby, Matt Alexander, Curtis Biloki, Lance Harris, Jeremy Dresch, Rob Wazwaz, Aaron Johnson, Patrick Steele, Taylor Tollefson, MSPT Ho-Chunk champion Jason Sell, Terry Ring, and Christian Pham.
Be sure to come back on Saturday for coverage of Day 1b right here on PokerNews. The cards will be in the air at 4 p.m. local time, and you can follow along by clicking here.
For more information on the MSPT and to find an upcoming stop near you, head over to MSPTPoker.com.