SCOOP: muggylicious goes wire-to-wire, wins Event 36-High ($2,100 HORSE)

scoop2009_th.gifI told myself this morning that I was not going to make any "high HORSE" references in the recap of SCOOP Event 36-High, $2,100 HORSE this year. Last year I crammed as any horse idioms - and especially high horse idioms - as I could into the recap. "Spiritual growth," I said. "You're better than that."

This year I'm just sticking to facts. For example, the high-stakes version of the 2010 SCOOP HORSE tournament cost a measly $2,100 to enter, down significantly from last year's $10,300. That was low enough to induce 134 players to enter the field. Two full eight-handed tables were paid, with the minimum cash receiving $5,360 and the winner entitled to $65,660.

For the second year in a row, the 16 Team PokerStars players represented more than 10% of the field, but for the second year in a row none of them made the money. But there were several familiar names that did, including a few who even reached the final table.

Event 36-High Final Table.JPG

Seat 1: Andy McLEOD (118,663 in chips)
Seat 2: loooser17 (92,359 in chips)
Seat 3: floes (81,233 in chips)
Seat 4: blony_tair (73,115 in chips)
Seat 5: $30K (61,436 in chips)
Seat 6: RugDoctor (20,827 in chips)
Seat 7: muggylicious (123,000 in chips)
Seat 8: pitplaya420 (99,367 in chips)

[Limits started at 2,500 and 5,000.]

The Event 36-High final table was the second HORSE final table of the night for Andy McLEOD. He busted in 7th place in the low-stakes version of the event. Could he do better in the high-stakes version?

RugDoctor came to the final table as the short stack, with four big bets. They went into the pot during the hold'em round on a flop of 8♣ 3♦ 7♥, RugDoctor having made a pair of three with K♦ 3♥. By that point, however, the pot was big enough and $30K was invested enough that $30K couldn't fold Q♥ J♥. A queen spiked on the turn; RugDoctor wasn't able to complete the re-suck on the river. Very quickly the final table was down to seven players.

Play proceeded through the rest of the hold'em round and the Omaha and Razz rounds without many significant pots. In the Stud round, however, another player was felted. $30K started K♠ Q♠ / 8♣ and paired queens on fourth street. That was enough to commit the rest of $30K's stack, especially as limits had increased to 4,000 and 8,000. But pitplaya420 started with buried aces, and neither player improved after fourth street. pitplaya420's aces held to drag the pot and eliminate $30K.

Just four hands later, still in the Stud round, blony_tair made a similar play after starting Q♠ J♠ / K♣. All the money was in by fourth street against Andy McLEOD, who had started with split nines. blony_tair made a pair of kings on fifth street; Andy McLEOD made aces and nines on sixth street. That left blony_tair needing a king on the river to avoid elimination. The second pair of queens that he made was not good enough.

Play progress to Stud Hi/Lo and it was clear that the two shortest stacks, floes and loooser17, were going to have to make a move. Each had fewer than three big bets left. floes' move came first after bringing it in with buried kings and trey showing. muggylicious had buried aces with a five showing. Each player made two pair on the river; neither player made a low. The aces and nines of muggylicious scooped the whole pot and sent floes to the rail in 5th place.

Andy McLEOD was leading the charge down the stretch, but faltered as the game switched back to hold'em, losing several pots in succession. muggylicious was the benefactor, grabbing more than 400,000 of the 670,000 total chips in play. With limits up to 5,000 and 10,000, muggylicious was in the captain's chair. Each of the other players would need to make hands in order to make a run. Four-handed the blinds come around too quickly to sit back for long.

Unfortunately for pitplaya420, the combination of the blinds and a few small losses ate up pitplaya420's stack. Down to 17,947, pitplay420 got all in pre-flop in the hold'em round with K♥ T♦ against Andy McLEOD's K♠ 8♣. Andy McLEOD flopped an eight and never looked back. The hand knocked pitplaya420 out in 4th place and restore some needed chips to Andy McLEOD's stack.

The remaining three players were still in the hold'em round six hands later when the last of the super short stacks, loooser17, capped the action pre-flop. Both Andy McLEOD and muggylicious had been dealt ace-queen and took a nine-high flop. loooser17 was all in by the turn, at which point Andy McLEOD and muggylicious checked the action down. Nobody made anything on a board of 3♣ 5♥ 9♠ 9♣ 7♦; Andy McLEOD and muggylicious chopped up loooser17's chips, leaving loooser17 without a chip or a chair.

muggylicious started heads-up play with a 2-to-1 chip advantage. Before the hold'em round ended, that advantage was increased to more than 3-to-1. Andy McLEOD didn't seem to fare well in any of the limit hold'em rounds at the final table. The switch to Omaha Hi/Lo couldn't have come sooner.

Andy McLEOD held his own in the Omaha round for a while but muggylicious kept applying pressure. Slowly muggylicious started to pull away, increasing the chip lead to 10-to-1 by winning 7 pots in a row, including four in a row that went to showdown. Andy McLEOD didn't surrender; he won one all-in pot with a straight and then started to grind back some scoopers of his own to restore the chip deficit to 3-to-1.

The players moved on to the Razz round. It was there that the wheels finally came off for Andy McLEOD. His boards bricked repeatedly, while muggylicious simultaneously was catching non-pairing babies with ease. This was the crippling hand:

RSS readers click through to see replay

A few hands later, down to 7,568 chips, Andy McLEOD caught the bring-in showing a ten and got all his chips in. It turned out that muggylicious was rolled up, 2-2 / 2, generally not what you're striving for in razz. But Andy McLEOD didn't have much of a hand either, 3-Q / 10. Both players caught a series of bricks, but at the river, muggylicious' K-Q-6-3-2 just barely pipped Andy McLEOD's K-Q-10-5-3.

muggyclious rode out on top of the high HORSE, taking the final table chip lead at the start and bringing home the SCOOP title. Andy McLEOD had to settle for two HORSE final tables in the same night, and a runner-up finish for $45,560 in the high-stakes version.

SCOOP Event 36-High $2,100 HORSE results:

1st place: muggylicious ($65,660)
2nd place: Andy McLEOD ($45,560)
3rd place: loooser17 ($34,840)
4th place: pitplaya420 ($24,120)
5th place: floes ($17,420)
6th place: blony_tair ($13,400)
7th place: $30K ($10,720)
8th place: RugDoctor ($8,040)

There are still two more events left before the 2010 version of the SCOOP All-Stakes Series comes to an end. For more information and to learn how to get in on the action, check out the SCOOP homepage.

Dave Behr
@PokerStars in SCOOP