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Bay 101 Shooting Star Ends in 10-Way Chop Due to Coronavirus

Craig Varnell won what may be one of the last big U.S. poker tournaments for some time.

While poker tournaments around the world announce shutdowns, a few stray events have gone forward. One such event concluded over the weekend in Bay 101 Shooting Star $5,200 Main Event, however organizers and players came to an agreement to end the event before a final table could be played in light of the growing threat of coronavirus.

As the final 10 players were scheduled to play out Day 3 on Friday, they instead chopped the remaining prize pool 10 ways.

Healthy Field Turns Up

Despite the growing pandemic, 290 entries were logged for the $5,000 event, which also featured $2,000 bounties on select "shooting stars." While that represented a drop from last year's 440, it wasn't a catastrophic one.

That created a prize pool more than $1.3 million, likely one of the last large prize pools that will occur in the near future in the live poker realm.

Of those, 37 would be paid. Max Young, Andrew Moreno, Mike Matusow, Chino Rheem and recent two-time WPT champ Tony Tran were some of the players who cashed.

PPC champ Phil Hui and WPT legend Darren Elias were the last two players to bust on what was scheduled to be penultimate day. According to the live updates, Hui busted with king-queen against ace-ten of Kristen Bicknell while Elias flopped top pair with {k-Diamonds}{j-Diamonds} and was outkicked by the {a-Spades}{j-Hearts} of Anthony Zinno.

The final 10 bagged up with a stacked field still left. Craig Varnell held the chip lead. Along with Varnell, other shooting stars left were Bicknell, Zinno, Tyler Patterson and Lexy Gavin. Anthony Spinella, Michael Tureniec and John Andress also remained in contention.

Deal Made in Lieu of Final Day

The last 10 players showed up on Friday to play out the event, but mounting concern over the coronavirus changed everyone's plans. Bay 101 is located is located in San Jose, and the Bay Area of California has been one of the more hard-hit areas of the U.S.

Varnell and Bicknell secured the top two prizes, and everyone got between $41,060 and $159,710. Varnell added the Bay 101 trophy to his WSOP bracelet and his WPT500 title.

10-Way Chop Results

1Craig Varnell$159,710
2Kristen Bicknell$141,520
3Navin Mohan$132,780
4Tyler Patterson$113,860
5Anshul Kulshrestha$101,430
6Michael Tureniec$91,180
7John Andress$88,800
8Anthony Zinno$55,600
9Anthony Spinella$50,000
10Lexy Gavin$41,060

Photo courtesy of Bay 101.

  • Rather than play a final table, the Day 3 players at Bay 101 opted to make a deal and head home.

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