Stout takes prelim event, WSOPC main event begins

Matthew Stout
Matt Stout proves his worth at the WSOPC Caesars Atlantic City.

Event 5

Sunday's action in the poker room at Caesars saw 225 players storm the felt for the $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em tournament. The $225,000 prize pool would be divvied up between the top 27 finishers in the event. Players who had already racked up successes earlier in this WSOPC schedule showed up again.

Event 3 winner Todd Rebello added on to that victory and to his third-place finish in Event 1 with another deep run in an event, albeit just to 18th place this time. One of the top players on the East Coast, Anthony Casagrande, also made a deep drive only to bust out in 17th place.

Going to the final table on Monday, Vinny Pajuda was chip leader with a more than 3-1 advantage over his closest competitor. Pajuda controlled the early action at the table, eliminating Lance Carter in ninth and Ed Berger in sixth.

After two hours of play, Pajuda continued to hold his lead, but faced a challenge from Allen Bari. Pajuda endured by eliminating Mike Huguenot in fourth, and Bari kept pace by dispatching Dewey Whitmore in third.

As heads-up play began, though, Pajuda's dreams of a wire-to-wire championship crumbled on one pivotal hand. When Bari was able to catch a three on the flop all-in with A-3, he decimated Pajuda's stack as his A-4 could not catch up. Left with just enough to post a blind, Pajuda was eliminated on the next hand and Allen Bari took down the $72,000 first prize and the WSOPC championship ring.

The final table ran out thusly:

Place
Name
Hometown
Prize
1st
Allen Bari
West Orange, N.J.
$72,000
2nd
Vinny Pajuda
New York, N.Y.
$39,600
3rd
Dewey Whitmore
Martinsburg, W.Va.
$20,250
4th
Mike Huguenot
Pleasantville, N.Y.
$15,750
5th
Michael Scipione
Philadelphia, Pa.
$13,500
6th
Ed Berger
Margate, N.J.
$11,250
7th
Soheil Shamseddin
Houston, Texas
$9,000
8th
Jeff Morrill
Brentwood, Tenn.
$6,750
9th
Lance Carter
Arlington, Va.
$4,500

Event 6

While it wasn't as large as the earlier tournaments with the same buy-in, Monday's $300 No-Limit Hold'em event still had an excellent turnout: 706 runners. Tuesday saw the final table come back to battle it out for the spoils of WSOPC combat.

Local player Rick Chang came to the final table with a slim chip lead that he began to expand almost from the start of play. He took out three final-table opponents and, down to four-handed play, seemed to be on his way to taking the championship. Unfortunately, it slipped away from him on one hand.

Chang decided to put pressure on Jim Stenella (who had eked out a chip lead) by moving all-in with A-Q. Stenella was more than happy to look him up with his pocket kings and, after no ace came on the board, Chang was out in fourth and Stenella assumed a nearly 7-1 chip lead over the two remaining competitors.

The threesome decided on a deal for the prize money, then resumed action to crown the champion. With such a large lead, Jim Stenella simply cruised to the victory in what was one of the shortest final tables at this Circuit stop - just over two hours.

The final-table results were:

Place
Name
Hometown
Prize
1st
Jim Stanella
Bucks County, Pa.
$57,186
2nd
Mustafa Ali
Sao Paulo, Brazil
$29,969
3rd
Joseph hanna
Ashtabola, N.J.
$16,944
4th
Rich Chang
Atlantic City, N.J.
$14,826
5th
Michael Smith
Winslow Township, N.J.
$12,708
6th
Jack Maloy
Connellsville, Pa.
$10,590
7th
Francis Pergine
Schwenksville, Pa.
$8,472
8th
Ralph Van Ormer
Macungie, Pa.
$6,354
9th
Mike Muscatello
Seaford, N.Y.
$4,236

Event 7

Wednesday marked the busiest day of the WSOPC Atlantic City, as the final table of Event 7, $500 No-Limit Hold'em, played out simultaneously with Event 8, a turbo tournament. The final table of Event 7 featured one of PokerListings.com's own duking it out with two top pros.

Matt Stout, a stalwart PokerListings blogger, came to the final table holding the chip lead over Atlantic City pro and WSOP bracelet holder Chris Reslock and 2007 WSOPC New Orleans champion Louie Esposito.

Stout eliminated three of the first five players from the table, benefiting from some fortuitous breaks along the way. While Thomas Kim was able to draw close, when Stout eliminated Reslock in third place, he still held a 3-2 lead over Kim.

Both Stout and Kim were the two top stacks at the start of the final table, so it was only fitting they would battle it out for the championship. After a brisk two hours to take care of the previous seven players, the twosome would take nearly another hour to decide the victor.

Starting out heads-up on a cautious note, both players moved once they caught hands they felt were worth their chips. The final hand saw Stout move in with A-Q and Kim make the call with pocket jacks. The flop was innocuous, but the queen on the turn gave Stout the lead. An ace on the river locked up the title for Stout.

The final-table results were:

Place
Name
Hometown
Prize
1st
Matt Stout
Atlantic City, N.J.
$59,210
2nd
Thomas Kim
Brooklyn, N.Y.
$30,560
3rd
Chris Reslock
Atlantic City, N.J.
$15,280
4th
Frank Passantio
Holmdel, N.Y.
$13,370
5th
Elizabeth Grey-Pardo
Yonkers, N.Y.
$11,460
6th
Lou Esposito
Howard Beach, N.Y.
$9,550
7th
Steven Merrifield
Fairmont, W. Va.
$7,640
8th
Bayarsaikhan Batkhuu
Arlington, Va.
$5,730
9th
David Godfrey
Belleville, N.J.
$3,820

Event 8

As Stout was pwning Event 7, the $200 Turbo No-Limit Hold'em event was playing out as well. A field of 607 stepped up to take part in the tournament. Its 20-minute levels were put in place to ensure that the preliminary action would be completed before the start of the $5,000 Championship Event today.

Ten hours after the start of action on Wednesday, New Jersey musician Leo Donofrio emerged as the first champion of a World Series-sanctioned turbo tournament.

The final-table results were:

Place
Name
Prize
1st
Leo Donofrio
$29,666
2nd
Justin Renna
$15,562
3rd
Bruce Bartfield
$8,476
4th
John Hirsch
$7,416
5th
Jonathan Calipes
$6,357
6th
Ronnie Bardah
$5,297
7th
Stephen Kimet
$4,238
8th
John Todaro
$3,178
9th
Angel Molina
$2,119

With the end of action on Wednesday night, the felt is clear for the $5,000 Championship Event today. Top professionals, including the aforementioned Reslock and Esposito, will be a part of the action, and perhaps some of the participants already out of the WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star will make the cross-country flight to attempt to take down top honors.

PokerListings will have a lock on the action in this three-day event in our Live Tournaments section and, come Saturday evening, the latest champion on the World Series of Poker Circuit will be crowned.

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