2019 World Series of Poker Circuit Harrah's Cherokee

Main Event
Days: 1a

Albrinck Bags Day 1a Chip Lead in Search of Another Title at WSOPc Cherokee

Level 16 : 2,000-4,000, 4,000 ante
Brad Albrinck
Brad Albrinck

The opening flight of the WSOP Circuit $1,700 Main Event at Harrah's Cherokee Casino Resort closed with 59 of 360 players moving on to Day 2. After more than 13 hours of play, Brad Albrinck amassed the largest stack in the room with 504,000 chips, more than 15x his starting stack.

Albrinck is no stranger to a circuit Main Event at Cherokee as he topped the field in December 2016 for his largest career score of over $275,000. The Ohio native has accumulated over $1.2 million in career tournament earnings with the majority of it coming in WSOP events.

Throughout most of the day, Dennis Powell held the chip lead after a strong start but tailed off late to finish with 249,000 chips. Albrinck was quietly going about his business as one of the late entries and emerged near the top of the leaderboard in the last few levels. To cap things off, Albrinck came from behind against Yoon Cheon when he flopped a pair of kings to send Cheon to the rail.

Some other big stacks moving on to Day 2 include Carlos Loving (446,000), Kobie Wilkerson (441,000), Scott Drobes (425,000), and Scott Sanders (404,000). Loving was also one of those who slowly built up a stack throughout the day and finished strong. Wilkerson, on the other hand, caught lightning in a bottle for about an hour of play in order to gain the majority of his chips.

It was a big turnout for the first of two starting flights, but Day 1b is expected to attract plenty of more players. If there is any hope of breaking last year's record attendance of 1,056 entries, Saturday's flight will need to nearly double that of Day 1a. With satellites continuing to run throughout the night and into the wee hours, the event center is expected to be jam-packed.

Many notables took their shot on Day 1a but it wasn't a successful flight for many, and even a single re-entry couldn't help some. Rex Clinkscales, Warren Sheaves, Martin Kozlov, Paulius Vaitiekunas, and Heather Alcorn all burned through two bullets and will likely return for Day 1b. Some others that failed to move on include Maurice Hawkins, Allen Kessler, Mo Nuwwarah, Jake Bazeley, Ryan Eriquezzo, and Eric Salazar.

Some other notables that were fortunate to make it through the day include Ryan Leng (195,000), Steven Grybas (184,000), Josh Reichard (132,000), Stanley Lee (102,000), Irene Carey (100,000), and DJ Alexander (100,000). Leng, a WSOP bracelet winner, was one of the last entries before registration closed and managed to spin up his 30,000 starting stack to nearly 300K before slipping back down.

The action will resume at 11 a.m. tomorrow for Day 1b, which is the last starting flight for the Main Event. Players will begin with a stack of 30,000 chips and late registration will remain open until the start of Level 13. A single re-entry will be permitted throughout the registration period. There will be a 15-minute break after every three levels and a 60-minute dinner break after the ninth level. Action will complete after a full 16 levels or when 16% of the field remains.

Keep it locked here for all of the updates from the tournament floor from the PokerNews live reporting team throughout the entire Main Event.

Tags: Allen KesslerBrad AlbrinckCarlos LovingDennis PowellDJ AlexanderEric SalazarHeather AlcornIrene CareyJake BazeleyJosh ReichardKobie WilkersonMartin KozlovMaurice HawkinsMo NuwwarahPaulius VaitiekunasRex ClinkscalesRyan EriquezzoRyan LengScott DrobesScott SandersStanley LeeSteven GrybasWarren SheavesYoon Cheon