LAPT San Jose: Flurry of activity at the end of the day

We've reached Level 10 here at LAPT San Jose. Blinds are not insignificant, sitting as they do at 600/1,200/100. One orbit around the table costs 2,700 chips. That's over a quarter of the original stack. Since most players don't enjoy the prospect of coming back on Day 2 to play an extremely short stack, there has been an increase in action. The short-stacked players are shipping it all into the middle, looking to double up or go home.

Alexandre Gomes, the last member of Team PokerStars in the field, was the first notable to move his short stack in preflop. He was called by Jeff Petronack. Both players held an ace and flopped an ace, but Petronack had the bigger kicker. That kicker proved decisive when Gomes rivered his second pair -- the same card that gave Petronack a Broadway straight. Gomes rapped the table before heading to the rail, where Andre Akkari and Maria Mayrinck were waiting to console him.

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Alexandre Gomes raps the table "good hand" and departs.

Shortly thereafter, Alex Brenes joined his family on the rail. He shipped his short stack into the middle with suited connectors, 10d-9d, and found himself in a 60-40 situation against an opponent's Ad-Jh. Brenes' supporters crowded (including the booming Magnus Bing) crowded the table and began shouting "Nueve!". Those cries turned to roars of "Diez!" when Brenes paired his ten on the turn. His joy was short-lived; a jack on the river sealed Brenes' fate.

Fortunes of some of the remaining players have changed significantly during the day. Shawn Patrick Ryan was short very early on, down to a mere 1,200 chips after running the second nuts into the nuts. "I even thought about folding," Ryan confessed, but in the end he decided he just couldn't get away from his hand. Since then things have broken his way. He now sits behind almost 80,000 in chips.

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Shawn Patrick Ryan reacting to an early beat.

The story has been completely the opposite for Brian Tate. After flirting with the chip lead during the middle levels of play, he's fallen back to 32,000. Earlier he was the biggest stack at the table, with position on the other big stacks. Now he's below par, and sitting to his immediate left is one of the day's chip leaders -- Costa Rica's Abraham Rosenkrantz, who has about 90,000 chips. The veteran Rosenkrantz demonstrated the power of position and the power of chips in a battle of the blinds by reraising Tate's 2,500-chip raise to 8,500. Tate was forced to concede the hand and look for a better spot.

Maria Stern is another veteran who is poised to come back tomorrow. She caught a huge double-up holding black aces against an opponent's ace-king. That win rocketed her up the chip counts to almost 70,000.

No doubt there will be quite a few more changes before play concludes for the day. Until then, the latest chip counts are always available on the Chip Counts page.

Dave Behr
@PokerStars in Latin American Poker Tour