The Mid-States Poker Tour (MSPT) is at FireKeepers Casino this week for the Michigan State Poker Championship. The $1,100 Main Event, which boasts a $200,000 guaranteed prize pool, kicked off Thursday evening with the first of three Day 1 flights.
After 14 levels of play on Day 1a,23 players made their way through to Day 2. Entries closed following the break after the end of Level 9 and the field stood at 122 for the first of three flights.
Of the 23 remaining, Alex Barill leads the way with a stack of 245,000. Nate Runkel finished second in chips and bagged up 226,500. Adam Friedman (203,000) and defending champ Jason Zarlenga (186,500) are close behind.
Barill grabbed the lead late in the day after rivering quads in a rollercoaster hand. Barill min-raised to 4,000 preflop and was met with a three-bet all in for around 30,000. Barill made the call and tabled versus the of his opponent. That is where the fun began.
The flop of gave Barill a set, but left his opponent drawing to the nut flush and an inside straight draw. The on the turn completed the flush, but Barill found the fourth ten on the river and sent his opponent to the rail, vaulting him at or toward the chip lead.
Among those less fortunate who failed to advance on Day 1a were Nick Guagenti, Scott Hammert, Adam Lamphere, Aaron Steury and Dash Dudley.
Two more starting flights will take place, as 14 levels will be played each day on Friday and Saturday. The tournament is sure to draw big numbers and easily exceed its $200,000 guarantee.
Join PokerNews back here at noon ET on Friday and Saturday as we see who will join in battle for a big top prize.