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Aaron Frei Claims Back-to-Back MSPT Golden Gates Regional Titles

Aaron Frei

Just last April, Aaron Frei won his first MSPT trophy after taking down the first $360 MSPT Golden Gates Regional Event of Season 10, and now he joins the club of back-to-back winners as he successfully defended his title. Over the weekend, he won his second $360 MSPT Golden Gates Regional Event of the season after a four-way chop, earning $36,607 as well as his second MSPT trophy.

"It's really hard to go wire-to-wire like that. I've never done this before. I've never done back to back," Frei said after his win. "I can't really believe it with so many players. I just feel very fortunate, I ran really well, I got away with a couple of good plays, but overall just pretty lucky. My friends tell me that I definitely run better in this casino than I should."

"I got away with a couple of good plays, but overall just pretty lucky. My friends tell me that I definitely run better in this casino than I should."

The tournament attracted a field of 915 entries but only 131 of them returned for Day 2. Frei was sharing the overall lead with Ryan Brown heading into the final day and between his run of good cards, and his game on point, he never really relinquished that chip lead and kept extending it.

With the fast-paced structure, the pressure was on early and chips were flying in all directions. Players were heading to the payout desk in succession and within a few hours, the final table was reached.

"The structure was really fast so it was a lot of gambling, a lot of pressure," Frei commented.

Indeed, having almost one-third of the chips in play when the final table started, Frei didn't waste any time and was seen jamming on his opponents left and right. He proved at multiple times that he wasn't afraid to put his chips in the middle. His big bluff when he shoved with queen-high on the river against Sergio Ruiz, who was the second biggest stack, was a confirmation of that.

"I just kind of knew when he checked back he just didn't want to continue after that and I just went for it," Frei explained. "I just didn't think he could call that big of a bet with us being the two biggest stacks. Everybody else was kind of short so I didn't think he would want to risk it unless he really had it."

Frei doesn't plan on stopping here. In fact, he plans on chasing another MSPT trophy.

"I will definitely play this Main Event," he said of this weekend's $1,100 MSPT Denver Poker Open

Final Table Results

1Aaron FreiUnited States$36,607*
2Sergio RuizUnited States$36,582*
3Griffin MalatinoUnited States$27,194
4Corey ZedoUnited States$25,312*
5Michael HindeUnited States$13,451*
6Ben BermanUnited States$10,157
7Abhinav ParakhUnited States$7,961
8Gary SchneiderUnited States$6,314
9Johnny AmbrosioUnited States$4,941

*Denotes four-way deal.

Final Table Action

Johnny Ambrosio was the first casualty of the final table. He only had three big blinds left when three-bet jammed with deuces. Frei added the remainder to call with six-four suited and flopped aces and sixes to win the pot, ending Ambrosio's run in ninth place.

Ambrosio was followed to the payout desk by Gary Schneider. Schneider was also short and needed to find a spot to double up. When Corey Zedo moved all in from middle position with ace-queen suited, he called for less from the big blind with fours. However, Zedo flopped a queen and Schneider couldn't improve, heading to the exit instead in eighth place.

Abhinav Parakh was eliminated in seventh place when he three-bet shoved his last four big blinds with king-ten suited after a raise from Frei with five-three suited. Fried called, rivered a five, and that was it for Parakh's deep run.

Ben Berman was next to go. He three-bet jammed with king-ten and got called by both Ruiz, who held king-ten suited, and Frei, who had queen-jack. Frei rivered a jack, scooping the pot and sending Berman to the exit in sixth place.

Sergio Ruiz
Sergio Ruiz

Michael Hinde was the last bust out before the four-way deal was struck. He moved all in from the small blind for his last four big blinds with five-three and got called byGriffin Malatino with king-six. Malatino flopped a pair of kings and took down the pot, eliminating Hinde in fifth place.

That wraps it up for the PokerNews coverage of the MSPT Golden Gates Regional Event. We'll continue our updates with more action during next weekend's $1,100 MSPT Denver Poker Open Main Event.

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  • Aaron Frei topped a 915-entry field to win @msptpoker @gates_poker $360 Regional to defend his title.

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