LAPT Lima: Day 2 live updates, Levels 13-16 (2500-5000-500)

lapt-promo.gif8:55pm: Dinner break
Players are taking a 60-minute break to eat a little something and think further about the soon-to-burst bubble.

8:45pm: Bubble bluff
There are 53 players left -- just five away from the money. We are also about 10 minutes from the next break, which will be a 60-minute dinner break. Thus the mood is starting to get a little festive around our remaining tables as the players anticipate both a breather from the action and the nearness of the cash.

Leandro Csome of Argentina is sitting near one of the screens showing the remaining time and players. Just now he took a piece of paper, wrote the number "48" on it, and held it over the "53" on the board, letting out a cheer as he did. Costa Rican Steven Thompson joined in the pseudo-celebration, hugging Csome in triumph.

All had a good laugh -- and clearly enjoyed the release of tension here as the bubble approaches. Then the next hand was dealt.


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Leandro Csome is presently in a better mood than this picture suggests,
now that the cash bubble is getting closer


8:29pm: Last lady sitting stands, then sits again
Pamela Espinosa is the last woman left in the field and has been in the hours since Maria Mayrinck busted out. She'd gotten relatively short, and when facing a raise to 18,000, put in her remaining 45,000 or so chips with K♠Q♥. Bad luck for her, as she was up against ace-queen. She stood from her chair with a resigned look on her face...and then the flop came 5♦K♥6♠. The turn and river didn't hurt her and she doubled up with a slightly tearful scream of joy. And then she sat back down. Thus, she remains our last lady sitting.

8:25pm: No comfortable seats
"I'd like to be on the other side of Nacho."

So said Martin Mathis to Chris Conrad just now. Conrad -- doing quite well himself with about 360,000 at present -- recently walked over to see how Mathis was doing. Mathis remains short-stacked with about 105,000, and was recently moved to Jose Barbero's table. Barbero is sitting a couple of spots to Mathis' left -- with Julio de la Rosa in between them.

The other side of Nacho wouldn't be so great a seat either, though, as that would make Jacob Baumgartner the next to act.

8:13pm: Champion Watch (Bathroom Edition)
We continue our coverage of the two Season 3 LAPT champions, Nacho Barbero and Amer Sulaiman. Barbero has picked up another pot since our last report and is now sitting above 350,000. Meanwhile, I ran into Sulaiman in the bathroom (this is comprehensive reporting, people). He reported (while doing his business, mind you) that he had just doubled up and now has 180,000. Nine spots off the money, we're pretty much guaranteed both of these guys will make the money. Here's to hoping Champion Watch can continue until Day 3.

8:07pm: Mathis eyeing the money
Martin Mathis continues to hang on as we approach the money bubble -- just nine eliminations away at the moment.

A player open-raised all in for about 48,000, and Mathis reraised all in for just a touch more. The rest got out, and Mathis showed A♠Q♣ to his foe's A♥[10h]. The board ran out 7♦2♠5♦8♠8♥, and Mathis now sits with about 115,000.

8:03pm: Comeback kid
Here's a comeback story in the making. American qualifier Ben Barrows started the day with 18,000 (less than his Day 1 starting stack). Right now, he has 180,000 and is among the top stacks in the room. He also happens to be sitting right in between Nacho Barbero and Jacob Baumgartner, two of the toughest players left in the tournament. So, good luck with that.

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7:59pm: Level 16 begins
The price of poker is... you know. Blinds 2,500 and 5,000 now, with a 500 ante.

7:56pm: Barberolling
A player raised from the hijack seat to 35,000, and Team PokerStars pro Jose "Nacho" Barbero reraised to 105,000 from the button, enough to put his opponent all in. It folded back around, and after pausing a beat the original raiser called with the rest of his chips, showing 7♥7♣. Barbero showed A♣K♦, and it was time for a race.

The flop came 4♣9♥K♣, giving Barbero a needed king. The turn brought another -- K♥. And the river was the 3♣. Another player hits the rail... or, should we say, makes his way through the throng of spectators and out of the poker room. Meanwhile, Barbero is stacking up about 270,000.

7:51pm: That is gonna leave a mark
So, we had to have the action explained to us three times and we're still not entirely sure it makes sense, but...well...well. So, David Figueroa opened for round 9,000, Lisandro Gallo made it in the neighborhood of 27,000, and Figeroa shoved for what amounted to around 60,000 more. Lisandro made the call with the powerhouse K♣Q♣. Turns out, it was a race against Figeroa's pocket tens. Good thing for Figeroa the flop was T♠J♥4♦. Right? Oh, you see that, too...yeah...open ended straight draw. Funny how that happens.

No worries, though. Just a 7♠ on the turn.

And...ready your air sickness bag...A♥ on the river. Gallo wins, Figeroa defines FML. End of story.

7:40pm: Lopez leap
There was about 35,000 in the middle, with the board showing 3♣8♠6♦2♦, and
Team PokerStars Online pro Karlo Lopez was in the tank, contemplating whether to call a 20,000 bet. Finally, he did. The river then brought the 8♦ and checks from both players.

Lopez' opponent showed A♦K♥, while Lopez held [10h][10d]. Lopez' tens carried the day, and he's now stacking about 170,000. There are 65 players remaining.


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7:28pm: New chip leader
Ladies and gentlemen, we have a new chip leader. Yacin Vasquez has just become the first person to cross the 300,000 mark. Now we're getting somewhere.

7:15pm: Slowdown? Why would there be a slowdown?
With 68 players left in the field, there seems to be a tightening of the chip-slinging in the last few minutes. I can't ever imagine why that would be. Never, never could guess.

In unrelated news, we hit the money in after 20 more eliminations.

7:02pm: Boom goes Baumgartner
Jacob Baumgartner just knocked out another opponent. His opponent had pushed all in from early position for about 30,000, and Baumgartner called from the big blind. The American tabled A♠6♥ and let out a sigh when he saw his opponent's A♥K♦.

The flop came [10c]7♦A♣, changing nothing. Then came the turn -- boom! -- the 6♠. And that changed everything, giving Baumgartner two pair.

The river was the 4♠, and as we begin Level 16 we are down to 69 players. Baumgartner chips up to 290,000.


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6:57pm: Play resumes
The players are back -- all 72 of them -- and cards are again in the air. The spectators haven't quite returned yet, but wait a few minutes. It should start getting loud in here again pronto.

6:42pm: Break it down
After a somewhat raucous last hour or so, the players and spectators are all filing out of the poker room for another 15-minute respite.

6:40pm: Baumgartner continues to thrive
Jacob Baumgartner began the day as our chip leader, and as we near the end of the sixth one-hour level of play today he remains among the chip leaders with a stack of about a quarter million.

His reading of his opponents continues to be good, too. Just now we saw him checking a 4♥6♦J♠2♥[10d] board, then calling his opponent's 30,000 bet (about two-thirds pot). His opponent showed A♦5♦, meaning Baumgartner's 7♣6♠ was best.

6:37pm: Brenes Watch returns (sort of)
We're usually joined on on the LAPT by fellow blogger Change100. Several stops ago, she began the Brenes Watch, a regular update on what is usually two or three generations of Brenes family members in the field. Like Change, most of the Breneses are off at the WSOP right now.

We do have one, however. Alex Brenes has been nursing a short-ish stack most of the day and with 74 players remaining still clings to around 45,000. Moments ago he picked up two red aces, got minimal action, and stack his chips. Sure, it's not much of a Brenes Watch, but it's the best we can do during lean times.

6:30pm: Eschewing priest puns
We'll just plan this one straight.

Crippled earlier by Jose de la Guardia, Belgian priest Cédric Lenners just got all-in against his nemeis with Q♦J♥. He was up against A♠9♥. Neither player improved his hand and Lenners is out short of the money.

6:18pm: Espinosa doubles through Shergill
There was about 20,000 in the middle, the chips curled around the corners of a Q♦5♣8♦ flop. Jeet Shergill checked, then Pamela Espinosa of Chile -- our last woman in the tourney, now competing against 76 men -- pushed all in with her last 38,000. Shergill made the call, turning over K♥8♥ for eights. Espinosa had him at that point with her 9♥9♣, but she didn't seem terribly optimistic.

The turn brought the A♦ and the river the 5♠, and Espinosa let out a small cheer. Many of her tablemates congratulated her as well for having survived.

Espinosa now sits with around 95,000 chips. Meanwhile, Shergill has had an up-and-down day of it, once soaring as high as 180,000 but now sitting with 80,000.


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Pamela Espinosa


6:08pm: Good call, Culebras
For Joaquin Culebras, the board was an uncomfortable looking K♦7♥7♦4♥9♥. And David Figueroa had made it all the more uncomfortable by quickly pushing out a bet of 20,000 into the 30,000-ish pot.

Culebras went deep into the tank. Finally he came up, exhaled, and made the call. It was a good one, as once he'd tabled his K♠2♠, Figueroa sent his cards face down to the dealer.

Culebras has about 135,000 now, while Figueroa has sunk below 50,000.

6:01pm: Score one for the poker gods
It was a three-way all in on a flop of 9♣4♣8♣. One player held 4♠8♥ and was about as far behind as he could be. Belgian priest Cédric Lenners was holding the winner at the moment with 9♥9♦ in the hole. Jose de la Guardia (aka "Pepa") wasn't too far behind, though, with Q♣Q♦. Lenners begged for the clubs to stay at bay. As if to spite him, the A♣ fell on the turn. Lenners didn't look too worried. He was almost certain the board would pair on the river. In fact, it did not. The 7♥ slid off on the river. Pepa picked up a monster, while Lenners found himself down below 30,000.

5:51pm: Betting, asking for info
Martin Mathis opened with a raise to 7,300 and it folded to David Figueroa. He asked what Mathis had left -- about 68,000 -- then reraised to 20,000.

It folded back around, and now it was Mathis' turn to ask what Figueroa had behind -- about 80,000. Mathis had all the information he needed, and let the hand go.

5:42pm: Level 14 begins
Blinds are now 1,500/3,000 with a 300 ante.

5:38pm: Kind of a big deal
Now that we are down to just ten tables, all of the unused tables have been moved out of the Atlantic City Casino poker room. The ropes have been brought out, and spectators have begun to fill the space around the tables, some of whom are quite vocal in their support of their favorite players.

We just saw another short-stack survive an all-in situation when his pocket queens outlasted an opponents pocket tens, with the river card drawing a huge cheer from the winning player's supporters. There are 85 players remaining, and probably 100 or more spectators.

Add to that the large number of media milling in between our ten remaining tables, and the excitement is really starting to build here at LAPT Lima. And it will only grow as we get closer to the cash.

5:31pm: Aguilar taking aim
In a four-way limped pot, including Rene Aguilar, David Figueroa and both blinds, all checked the 8♠9♠5♦ flop and K♣ turn. The river brought the Q♦. It checked to the Chilean Aguilar who took a stab for 2,500, Figueroa folded, and one of the blinds called.

Aguilar turned over Q♥[10h], which proved best against his opponent's Q♠7♠. With that one, Aguilar adds a few more to his already impressive stack, and sits with about 220,000 at present.

5:26pm: Ocho!
Now that we are down to 88 players, the tables will now start to move to eight-handed play. Well stay that way all the way to Saturday's final table.

5:24pm: New dot on the radar
That new blip you see on your scope is none other than Chile's Rene Aguiar. Sitting on 210,000 chips, he's got a top ten stack with 88 players remaining.

5:18pm: NSFB
We try to maintain a family atmosphere here on the PokerStars Blog, so there are certain things that fall under the NSFB category. We hear these things on a regular basis and discount them quickly, usually because they are more than boring or just profane for the sake of profanity.

Every once in a while, though, we run across a quote that's just too good to pass up. So, we'll change one or two words* of the following quote from Jose Barbero and let you fill in the blanks.

With that prelude out of the way, it appears the chips at the big-stacked table in the middle of the room are following a nice clockwise path around the table, and are being regularly exchanged among Jose Barbero, Jacob Baumgartner, and another player at the table. Barbero summed it up thusly:

"This is how it goes. He's my witch* and you're my witch*. It's a triangle of love."

That's one triangle I don't feel like getting in the middle of for any reason. Witches or not.

5:14pm: No hurries, no worries
A lot of cautious play happening during this level. We've only lost four players since the last break, leaving us 93. The average stack has now crept up over the 80,000-mark.

A little under half of our remaining players will be making the cash, as the top 48 spots pay.

4:54pm: Champion Watch, Day 2
We continue to monitor the unfolding situation in Lima, as two previous Season 3 LAPT Champions (read: all of them) remain in the LAPT Lima main event. Both Playa Conchal champion Amer Sulaiman and Punta del Este winner Jose "Nacho" Barbero still have big stacks with 94 players left in Day 2. Barring any massive collapse, we could see them both in the money within the next few hours.

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5:40pm: Cards in the air, pants on the ground, hands in the air, etc
With 97 players remaining, we're back in action.

4:36pm: Still Duyen it right
While Jacob Baumgartner and Julio de la Rosa still maintain the co-chip lead, Costa Rica's Pham Duyen is is still running in second with around 200,000 chips.

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4:27pm: Still a long way to go
After four levels of play, we are sitting at 97 players. Just about half of those people will walk away with cash. The rest walk away with a story (and if they are lucky, maybe a bottle of pisco).

We're resetting with a new post here. As you can see, we're hard-ish at work during the break.

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LAPT Lima reporting comes courtesy of bloggers Brad Willis and Martin Harris and photographer Carlos Monti.