The 2014/2015 World Series of Poker Circuit recently completed their $1,675 Main Event at Harveys Lake Tahoe, a tournament that attracted 380 entrants and created a prize pool of $570,000. After four days of intense play, Jesse Wilke emerged victorious to capture the $125,401 first-place prize, the gold championship ring, and a seat into the season-ending National Championship.
Final Table Results
|1||Jesse Wilke||Kenmore, WA||$125,401|
|2||Barry Kay||Incline Village, NV||$77,492|
|3||Gerald Cohen||Orinda, CA||$56,624|
|4||Jasthi Kumar||San Ramon, CA||$42,043|
|5||Dan Stir||Sacramento, CA||$31,703|
|6||Allen Hickman||Dripping Springs, TX||$24,265|
|7||Richard Fitzgerald||Sioux Falls, SD||$18,844|
|8||Yotam Shmuelov||San Francisco, CA||$14,843|
|9||Robert Donahue||Zephyr Cove, NV||$11,856|
Notable finishes: La Sengphet (14th - $7,877), Sean Drake (20th - $5,523), Daniel Lowery (35th - $2,839), Michael Moore (45th - $2,576)
According to the WSOP coverage, the third day of the tournament saw 72 players return to action, but just seven would remain by the time they bagged for the night. That meant two players from the official final table fell before night’s end. They included Robert Donahue, who exited in ninth place after his was cracked by Allen Hickman’s ; and Yotam Shmuelov, who failed to get there with against the of Jasthi Kumar.
The final seven players returned to action on Monday in Level 26 (15,000/30,000/5,000), and it didn’t take long for the next elimination to occur. It happened when Dan Stir opened for 60,000 under the gun and then called when Richard Fitzgerald shoved all in for 370,000 from the hijack.
It was a race but Fitzgerald was left wanting after the board ran out a dry . Fitzgerald, who needed to finish in the top three to take over the Casino Championship lead, exited in seventh place for $18,844. That gave Steve Foutty, who won Event #5 $365 No-Limit Hold’em for $13,850 and notched two other cashes, earned the Harveys Lake Tahoe Casino Championship. As a reward he earned a coveted seat into the season-ending National Championship.
From there, Hickman (6th - $24,265), Stir (5th - $31,703), and Kumar (4th - $42,043) all hit the rail, and then Gerald Cohen exited in third place when he got his stack all on a board holding the . Unfortunately for him, Wilke had him beat with the for two pair, and the blanked on the river. Cohen earned $56,624 for his third-place finish while Wilke took a more than 2-1 chip lead into heads-up play against Barry Kay.
In Level 30 (40,000/80,000/10,000), Kay opened for 200,000, Wilke called, and the flop came down , which they both checked. When the appeared on the turn, Wilke led out for 300,000 and then moved all in after Kay raised to 900,000. Kay called off with the for a straight, but it was second best as Wilke held a bigger straight with the . The meaningless was put out on the river, and Kay had to settle for second place and a $77,492 consolation prize while Wilke became the Harveys Lake Tahoe champion.
“It is a big deal,” the 32-year-old Wilke told the WSOP after his win. “I’ve had kind of a rough year. I had the chip lead of the Main Event on Day 4 in the money and didn’t make Day 5. It means a lot to finally connect the dots between online and live play and show a little success on the live circuit, too. I have a symbol that my hard work actually paid off.”
The 2014/2015 WSOP Circuit will continue at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas from Nov. 13-24.
*Photos and data courtesy of the WSOP.