Connor Stuewe Claims First Place After 3-Way Chop at $1,600 MSPT Venetian Main Event ($156,520)
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The Day 2 finale of the $1,600 Mid-States Poker Tour(MSPT) Main Event at Venetian Las Vegas has come to an end after the final three players agreed to split up the remaining prize pool.
Connor Stuewe will take home the trophy and the top prize of $156,520, while David Jackson wins $154,589 and Aaron Massey takes $139,852.
The tournament drew 808 entries and generated a prize pool of $1,151,400.
$1,600 MSPT Venetian Main Event Final Table Results
*- denotes ICM chop deal
Day 2 Action
The finale started with 91 players and Jesse Lonis came into Day 2 with the overall chip lead after three opening flights. All returning players were in the money and the initial eliminations came fast. Among the first to go was MSPT Player of the Year contender Justin Barnum.
Barnum shared a table with fellow P.O.Y. candidate Dan Bekavac, and the two clashed early in pursuit of enough points to catch leader Josh Reichard. Barnum was out when Andrew Moreno called his shove with seven-deuce and made a flush with the deuce of hearts. Bekavac built an early stack but bowed out in 45th place.
2022 MSPT Player of the Year Leaderboard
|1||Josh Reichard||Janesville, WI||6,125|
|2||CJ Peake||Cleveland, OH||5,325|
|3||Dan Bekavac||Chicago, IL||5,150|
|4||Justin Barnum||Fargo, ND||4,250|
|5||John Dennehey||Savage, MN||3,850|
|6||Michael Estes||Coralville, IA||3,400|
|7||Aaron Massey||Elmwood Park, IL||3,375|
|8||Wesley Cannon||Minneapolis, MN||3,300|
|9||Miroslav Semanisin||Wisconsin Dells, WI||3,100|
|10||Craig Trost||Madison, WI||3,000|
CJ Peake was the other returning player with a chance to climb the MSPT leaderboard, and he made a run to seventh place to jump into the second spot. Peake and the others will have a chance for more points at upcoming stops in Minnesota and back at the Venetian at the end of the year.
Several notable players fell just before the final table, including Anthony Spinella (15th, $12,665), Michael Wang (14th, $12,665), Mitchell Halverson (12th, $14,726), and Martin Zamani (10th, $19,203). Jessica Vierling also made a deep run to 11th place for $14,726.
Play stretched out throughout the final table and the eliminations continued at a slow pace as players fought for the big pay jumps. Errol Samuel was out in ninth place when he shoved with ace-jack but ran into the Big Slick of Peter Lynn.
Eight-handed play continued for nearly three hours until Jared Strauss was eliminated in eighth place when his pocket sixes couldn't keep pace with Stuewe's pocket queens. From there the pace picked up and Peake was soon out in seventh after his suited ace-ten couldn't catch up to Lynn's ace-jack.
Lynn picked up momentum with the back-to-back eliminations, but he was cut short in sixth place when he fell behind and his jack-ten couldn't catch up to Stuewe's pocket threes. Jared Jaffee was next to go in fifth after maintaining a chip lead for the later stages of the tournament. He called Jackson's shove with suited queen-jack, but Jackson turned over pocket aces and Jaffee was on the rail.
Nick Pupillo was next to go in fourth when his pocket tens got outdrawn by Jackson's suited king-eight. Pupillo picked up his 25th MSPT cash this week, which fulfills one of the major requirements for entrance into the MSPT Hall of Fame. He only needs to win an MSPT Main Event and he will become the 11th player inducted into the prestigious club.
The final three battled for the remaining hours, and Stuewe maintained a chip lead for most of the time. However, a late double by Jackson brought him nearly even with Stuewe and talk of a deal started in earnest. After a few moments, the players reached a deal and Stuewe collected the trophy.
What's Next for MSPT?
The MSPT will return to Columbus, Minnesota at Running Aces for the Winter Poker Classic from December 1-11. The $1,110 Main Event will offer a $300,000 guarantee and it will run from Dec. 8-11. All told, the Winter Poker Classic will offer over $700,000 in guarantees throughout the event.
After Running Aces, the MSPT will make their way back to Las Vegas to wrap up the season with one last tournament at Venetian Las Vegas from Dec. 28-30.
Be sure to keep it with the PokerNews team for coverage of your favorite MSPT events as the race for Player of the Year comes down to the wire in December.
Las Vegas-based PokerNews Live Reporting Executive, originally from Chicago, IL