Day 1a Completed
Day 1a Completed
The Main Event of the inaugural PokerStars Festival New Jersey kicked off today and drew 81 players. After 10 one-hour levels, just 25 players survived and reserved a seat for Day 2. Bagging up the Day 1a chip lead was Ruben Costa with 222,500, followed by John Gulino with 196,700 and Ryan Hohner with 158,300.
Team PokerStars was well represented today with eight players, and those surviving the Day 1a flight were Victor Ramdin and Barry Greenstein with 69,200 and 34,200, respectively. The day was not as kind to a few others, though.
Jason Mercier grinded a short stack for much of the day, but busted with about 30 minutes left in the final level. His looked primed for a double against the of Bovic Gabriel when Mercier paired his king on the flop, but Gabriel found Broadway on the river to send Mercier to the rail. Felipe Ramos was down to a few big blinds early in the day and managed to double up three times, but also fell when his flush draw failed to hit against an opponent's overpair. Vanessa Selbst committed her chips after the turn with a check-shove on a board that read , but was insta-called by Gulino, who held for a set. Selbst just mucked her hand and Gulino rode that pot to bagging the second biggest stack of the day.
Andre Akkai, Chris Moneymaker, and Fatima Moreira de Melo were the other Team PokerStars Pros that failed to advance. Others who busted today include Natasha Barbour, Jonathan Little, Aaron Mermelstein, Je Wook Oh, Bruce Yamron, Albert Daher and Norman Michalek.
Play resumes Wednesday at 11 a.m. with Day 1b, and we'll be here to provide live updates on all of the action.
Players have bagged for the night.
We found David Johnston in the cutoff and calling the all-in shove of Kevin Crombie, who was on the button with . Johnston had him dominated with , and the two watched a board roll out that improved neither. Crombie said he enjoyed playing and took his leave.
After folding plenty while nursing a short stack over the past few hours, PokerStars Team Pro Jason Mercier finally shoved all in for 9,600 in the small blind after Bovic Gabriel opened cutoff for 3,000. Gabriel called.
The flop came , giving Mercier the edge but he still had cards to fade. The turn wasn't one of them but Gabriel hit a straight on the river.
"Do I have to get up now?" Mercier asked with a smile.
David Vamplew raised from the button, Norman Michalek called from the small blind, and Javier Negron called from the big blind.
The flop came down and Michalek checked to Negron who led out for 1,300. Both Vamplew and Michalek called.
The turn was the and Michalek checked to Negron who led again, this time for 2,500. Both Vamplew and Michalek called.
The river was the and Michalek checked to Negron who bet for a third time, this one being 6,000. Vamplew folded, Michalek check-raised all in for about 24,000, and Negron called.
Michalek showed for a queen-high flush, but Negron turned over for a king-high flush to win the pot and eliminate Michalek.
David Johnston got his last 27,200 in preflop from the small blind against Ricky Guan in the big blind. Johnston was in great shape with nines against against fours, and a board of kept him best.
The next hand, Carlos Chadha opened for 3,400 and Johnston made it 7,000 on the button. Chadha called, and the two checked a flop. Chadha bet 4,200 on the turn, and Johnston called. Both checked the , and Chadha tabled sevens. Johnston got there on the river with , though.
Peter Smyth bet 11,000 from middle position on a board of . David Vamplew asked for a count of his remaining chips and then called from the button after getting a quote of 30,900. Smyth checked the river and Vamplew wasted no time before shoving all in. Smyth sighed and leaned back in his chair, thinking about 30 seconds before mucking.
Matt Affleck raised to 2,600 from the hijack, Shawn Daniels called from the small blind, Albert Daher three-bet shoved for about 24,000 from the big blind, Affleck folded, and Daniels called.
The flop came down , giving Daher the lead with a set of nines. The turn kept Daher in the lead, but the river was the to give Daniels a queen-high straight to eliminate Daher.