The final table of Event 14 was one that boasted of names like SCTrojans, niccc, and THAY3R. Almost every player at the table has had prominent online poker accomplishments to date, and the tough action reflected their experience. It was no surprise when Leqenden and SCTrojans made it to heads-up play, even though they held some of the shorter stacks when the final table began. Heads-up play was a solid battle, but Leqenden was unstoppable and ended up with the victory.
As the 2013 Spring Championship of Online Poker rolls on, Event 14 offered a variation of No Limit Hold’em that has become a fan favorite. NLHE with big antes starts with an ante in Level 1 and raises that ante with each level. It adds another element to the game, as the antes are always in play and even more of a factor than the blinds in some cases. In addition, this was a rebuy tournament, so players could rebuy as many times as desired within the first 90 minutes and then purchase an add-on at the end of that registration period.
The high buy-in option for Event 14 (14H) offered a $1,050 buy-in and a $400K guarantee. But when the numbers were calculated, the prize pool amounted to more than double that amount. Let’s get to those numbers:
Prize pool: $902,000.00
Paid players: 36
This was also a two-day tournament, meaning players were set to complete 16 full levels of action on Day 1 (May 16) and then pause to return the following day to play for the win.
The tournament would play toward the money without any members of Team PokerStars remaining. Vanessa “LadyMaverick” Rousso was the last Team Pro standing in the event but exited in 60th place.
It wasn’t until late that night that the money bubble burst, and it happened just before play ended for the night with Matt “All_in_at420” Stout as the bubble player. Pistecaloze was the first player to cash for $6,765.00, and p0cket00, Rens02, and jus2awsum followed before play ended.
With 32 players remaining, play was scheduled to restart at the beginning of Level 17, with blinds of 600/1,200 and a 240 ante. Of the remaining 32 players, the top 10 player on the leaderboard, with their corresponding chip counts, were as follows:
1. lechuckpoker (UK) 268,478
2. WushuTM (Austria) 224,552
3. GripDsNutz (Costa Rica) 218,333
4. Unkn0wn123 (Uruguay) 206,130
5. calvin7v (Finland) 176,982
6. takechip (Canada) 173,664
7. brianm15 (Costa Rica) 150.072
8. Monk532 (Canada) 149,835
9. stevie444 (UK) 133,090
10. buck21 (Canada) 132,769
When play restarted on the second day of action, play was slow and steady. It took more than two hours to thin the field to only two tables full of players, and that happened at the expense of 18th place finisher Shawn “buck21” Buchanan. Play moved forward as competitors like Martin “KortKongen” Pedersen exited in 16th, Kevin “ImaLuckSac” MacPhee left in 15th, Phillipe “takechip” D’Auteuil in 13th, and the 11th place elimination of Bjorn “kleath” Kleathersson started hand-for-hand play.
Surprisingly, it didn’t take long to burst the bubble. Heißtercamp began the hand with a raise, and brianm15 reraised. Heißtercamp responded by moving all-in with A♠Q♥, and brianm15 called with J♥J♠. The board only produced 3♣3♦5♠3♠8♣, and heißtercamp was out in tenth place with $14,432.00.
Very strong lead for Vinkyy
The final table began in Level 24, with blinds of 2,500/5,000 and a 1,000 ante, along with these players and their chip counts:
Seat 1: SCTrojans (374,000 in chips)
Seat 2: $kill Game (427,066 in chips)
Seat 3: Mafews (400,428 in chips)
Seat 4: THAY3R (167,780 in chips)
Seat 5: Unkn0wn123 (288,520 in chips)
Seat 6: Leqenden (224,337 in chips)
Seat 7: Vinkyy (731,166 in chips)
Seat 8: brianm15 (340,369 in chips)
Seat 9: niccc (304,334 in chips)
Only a few hands in, a battle of the blinds began with a raised flop of J♣7♣10♠. Both players checked, and the 10♥ came on the turn. $kill Game bet, and Mafews raised. $kill Game reraised all-in, and Mafews called all-in with A♦10♦ for trip tens, but $kill Game showed 7♥7♠ for the turned full house. The 2♣ on the river eliminated Rory “Mafews” Mathews in ninth place with $17,138.00.
Very tough fall for Vinkyy
That put $kill Game in the chip lead, and Leqenden chipped up into second place on the leaderboard. But niccc doubled through $kill Game soon after, putting the latter back in third place and Leqenden on top. And when brianm15 doubled through Vinkyy, the former went into second place and Vinkyy sunk to the lower half of the chip counts. Unkn0wn123 also doubled through SCTrojans.
THAY3R was on a stack of less than 150K and pushed all-in with Q♦J♦, and brianm15 called from the small blind with 9♣9♠. The board came A♣10♣7♦10♥9♦ to give brianm15 the full house, and Thayer “THAY3R” Rasmussen exited in eighth place with $22,550.00.
Vinkyy had been chipped down to less than 55K cihps and pushed all-in with A♣10♠. SCTrojans called from the button with A♠Q♣, and the virtual dealer brought J♦7♦2♥J♣6♦, which helped neither player. SCTrojans had the better kicker, so Ondrej “vinkyy” Vinklarek departed in seventh place with $31,570.00.
Unkn0wn123 was the next player at risk, moving all-in with A♠8♦. Original raiser SCTrojans called with A♠J♠, which only improved on the 6♠7♣K♣J♥10♦ board. Unkn0wn123 was eliminated in sixth place with $40,590.00.
$kill Game had a rough tournament. After the initial rise into the chip lead, he lost ground and then got involved with Leqenden. A reraised flop of 2♠7♦4♣ brought a bet from Leqenden and call from $kill Game. The Q♣ on the turn did the same, and when the A♥ hit on the river, Leqenden bet, and $kill Game called all-in with Q♦5♦ for the pair of queens. But Leqenden showed A♦5♣ for top pair, and Max “$kill Game” Weinberg had to leave in fifth place with $52,316.00.
Final four favor a deal
The last four players decided to take a look at some deal numbers, and after considering the ICM and chip-chop figures, they agreed on ICM. With $8,000 in additional money set aside for the winner, the payouts were set as follows:
Seat 1: SCTrojans (786,250 in chips) = $121,902.04
Seat 6: Leqenden (934,553 in chips) = $127,499.91
Seat 8: brianm15 (944,022 in chips) = $127,829.47
Seat 9: niccc (593,175 in chips) = $113,123.58
It didn’t take long from that point for niccc to make his move. The hand started with a raise from niccc and call from SCTrojans in a battle of the blinds. The flop of 2♦5♦3♦ brought a bet from SCTrojans and check-raise from niccc. SCTrojans responded with another raise, and niccc called all-in with 8♣8♦ for the flush draw. SCTrojans showed A♦7♣ for the straight flush draw, and he made it on the 4♦ turn. The 3♣ on the river officially sent Nicolas “niccc” Chouity out in fourth place with $113,123.58.
A major preflop raising war between brianm15 and Leqenden resulted in brianm15 all-in with A♦J♣ and Leqenden showing 8♠8♥. The race was on until the board produced 3♥2♦Q♥A♥2♥ for the flush. Brian “brianm15” England departed in third place with $127,829.47.
Nothing easy about this heads-up match
The final two players began with these stacks:
Seat 1: SCTrojans (1,440,800 in chips)
Seat 6: Leqenden (1,817,200 in chips)
After many rounds of play, the two held nearly even stacks until this hand:
That gave Leqenden nearly a two-to-one chip lead, and any progress made from that point forward for SCTrojans was trumped by a bigger pot going to Leqenden. SCTrojans (pictured below) was relegated to 708K chips when the land hand came about.
Leqenden raised, and SCTrojans reraised to see a flop of A♥Q♦10♠. SCTrojans bet, and Leqenden called for the 4♦ on the turn, which brought the same action. The A♣ came on the river, which prompted the all-in bet from SCTrojans with 9♥7♠. Leqenden called with A♠8♠ and trip aces, which eliminated Scott “SCTrojans” Freeman in second place with $121,902.04.
Leqenden won the SCOOP title, watch, and $135,499.91 in cash. Congrats!
PokerStars 2013 SCOOP Event #14-H ($1,050+R NLHE Big Antes) results:
Places paid: 36
(Payouts reflect four-way deal)
1. Leqenden (Belarus) $135,499.91*
2. Scott “SCTrojans” Freeman (Mexico) $121,902.04*
3. Brian “brianm15” England (Costa Rica) $127,829.47*
4. Nicolas “niccc” Chouity (Lebanon) $113,123.58*
5. Max “$kill Game” Weinberg (Canada) $52,316.00
6. Unkn0wn123 (Uruguay) $40,590.00
7. Ondrej “Vinkyy” Vinklarek (Czech Republic) $31,570.00
8. Thayer “THAY3R” Rasmussen (Mexico) $22,550.00
9. Rory “Mafews” Mathews (UK) $17,138.00
Check out the SCOOP homepage for all of the upcoming tournaments and satellites, as well as the leaderboard and SCOOP statistics.
Jennifer Newell is a PokerStars freelance contributor.