Thursday, November 15, 2012

Event 12 Recap

$260 + 40 Big Stack NL Hold'em ($100,000 Guarantee) 

A chip and a chair was more than a cliche in this event at the Borgata Fall Poker Open.

Not only did two players at the final table get down to their last antes earlier in the tournament, but winner Asher Conniff (Brooklyn, NY) felt like he was free rolling most the night.

"On break I thought, 'I shouldn't even be here'", said Asher Conniff (Brooklyn, NY), who felt fortunate to beat James Blankenship (Circleville, OH) and Ila Dyment (Brooklyn, NY) three-handed to win the title. "It hasn't sunk in yet," he said about winning the trophy and the $42,182 top prize.

Conniff's good fortune came after the money bubble broke and he was at risk for his tournament life with AK against pocket aces. But when K Q J 10 hit the board, he got new life with the chopped pot.

Conniff's run-good vibes continued three-handed when Dyment was poised for the knockout with pocket queens, but Conniff hit a straight on the river with A 5 to stay alive.

Shortly after Dyment was eliminated in third place for $15,002, Conniff seized the chip lead when Blankenship bluffed with 8 high and Conniff won a 10 million chip pot.

"I'm disappointed," said Blankenship, an accountant, who only plays poker a few times a year. "I was tired and made a few mistakes at the end."

The stacked final table included Roman Valerstein (4th), Dave Inselberg (7th) and former Borgata trophy winner Vinny Pahuja (5th), who shouldn't have made the money, much less the final table.

Pahjua was down to two antes when the blinds were 500/1k/200 ante, and managed to not only double-up several times, but had the chip lead late in the tournament.

But the true chip and a chair belonged to David Hurwitz, who had one 500 ante chip with 100 players remaining. Hurwitz not only doubled multiple times, but also knocked out Grace Sun, who went from the dinner break chip lead to an early 58th place exit.

Hurwitz turned his good fortune into a 10th place finish and was eliminated by Dyment on the first hand of the final table.

721 players entered the tournament to create total a buy-in of $187,460.

Familiar faces who cashed in the event included 2010 WPT Borgata Poker Open Champion Dwyte Pilgrim (67th), former Tournament Leaderboard winner Austen Johnson (61st) and Event 4 winner Matt Iles (22nd).

Conniff is a 24-year-old who plays poker full time and has now scored this, the largest live tournament win of his career.

Final Table Results
1 Asher Conniff (Brooklyn, NY) $42,182
2 James Blankenship (Circleville, OH) $25,544
3 Ila Dyment (Brooklyn, NY) $15,002
4 Roman Valerstein (Philadelphia, PA) $12,365
5 Vinny Pahuja (Hicksville, NY) $10,001
6 Bryan Miller (Bensalem, PA) $8,183
7 Dave Inselberg (Long Beach, NY) $6,546
8 David Sanders (Mt. Laurel, NJ) $5,001
9 Kenny Moyer (Hatfield, PA) $3,445
10 David Hurwitz (West Berlin, NJ) $2,273


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