Aspiring journalist takes top prize at Million V, makes history

Mike Schneider, a 22-year-old journalism student from Minneapolis, took first place at the Million V tournament this weekend to become the youngest ever winner in the history of the five year Million tournament series. Schneider was awarded $1 million for his triumphant defeat of pro player Kenna James, who placed second. Third place was taken by another record-breaker, Scott Buller, who is the first player to have ever made two Million final tables.

Schneider is currently studying at the University of Minnesota and funds his ongoing studies through his online poker winnings. He will graduate in the fall of 2006. The Million V was only his second high stakes tournament. Schneider says he plans to invest his winnings after he builds up his bankroll and puts some money aside for his everyday expenses.

James, a Las Vegas resident, received $700,000 for his second place finish, the largest paycheck of his career. His biggest previous payday was $588,210 for a second place finish in last year’s Legends of Poker at the Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles.

Lincoln, Nebraska, resident Scott Buller was awarded $500,000 for his fourth in-the-money Million finish. Buller has been on every Million cruise and placed in the money with 5th, 15th, and 20th finishes before making this final table. Thus far, he has made a total of $600,000 in Million winnings.

Two online players, Drew Chitiea, a corporate pilot and flight instructor from Centennial, CO, and Richard Joel, a retired businessman from Atlanta, placed fourth and fifth and took home $300,000 and $225,000, respectively.

Sixth place was taken by Devon Miller, a 21-year-old pro from Los Angeles. He was the first to leave the final table and collected $175,000 for his efforts.

Known as the world's largest Limit Hold'em tournament, the Million V began last Monday with a field of 528 and a $5,280,000 prize pool aboard the MS Westerdam.

To read more about the Million V, please see Million V.

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