MICHELLE CHIN LEADS FINAL FOUR OF COUNCIL BLUFFS MAIN EVENT

April 20, 2015 - 03:37:40 AM EST  | 

MICHELLE CHIN LEADS FINAL FOUR OF COUNCIL BLUFFS MAIN EVENT

On Sunday, the World Series of Poker Circuit Main Event at Horseshoe Casino in Council Bluffs, Iowa returned for Day 2 action. The day began with 81 players advancing from the preliminary flights with two late-entries joining the fray. After 13 full levels of play, the field was whittled down to the official final table and beyond. By the end of the day, just four players remained in contention for the title, the gold ring, and $88,126 in first-place prize money. Michelle (Yashuo) Chin held the chip lead for most of the day and will lead the final four with 1.805 million in chips.

The Council Bluffs Main Event has a way of making history. Most notably, this stop on the Circuit is the home to Blair Hinkle's three Main Event victories over the course of five years. This year is no different, in fact, as Chin looks to become the first-ever female WSOP Circuit Main Event winner. Chin exploded toward the top of the chip counts once the field reached the money on Day 2. With just two tables remaining, Chin found herself on the right side of a suck out against eventual 11th place finisher Chris Karambinis. Chin set Karambinis all in before the flop with ace-queen and needed to improve against his ace-king in order to score the knockout. A king on the flop looked as if it would seal the deal, but a running jack-ten on the turn and river gave her Broadway and allowed her greatly extend her chip lead heading into the unofficial final table. From there, Chin constantly applied pressure to her opponents and continued to trend upward for most of the day.

Joining Chin among the final four is none other than 2014/15 WSOP Circuit Harvey's Lake Tahoe Main Event champion Jesse Wilke. Wilke is looking to earn his second title of the season and he will return for the final day as third in chips with 1.035 million. Ring-winner and Circuit regular Michael Sanders is looking for his first Circuit Main Event title and first ring win since the 2012/13 season. He will return with 800,000 in chips. Rounding out the final four is Mike Lang, a self-professed newcomer who stated that his wife was at home sweating the live updates. Lang bagged 1.06 million to end Day 2, good for second in chips overall.

The day began with the returning players from the opening flights looking to make the money. Unfortunately, this goal was unattainable for most of the field as only the top 24 players were guaranteed a payday. Some of the players to return for Day 2 only to fall short of the money include Grant Hinkle, Josh Williams, Zal Irani, Nicholas Palma, Jason Mayfield, Josh Mancuso and Ari Engel. The bubble burst when Circuit regular Glen Goldsmith fell against Greg Beaufait during a preflop all in.

Some of the familiar faces to make the money include Nathan Bjerno (24th), Frank Patti (18th), all-time ring leader Alex Masek (18th), and 2011 WSOP bracelet winner Eric Rodawig (14th). Most notably, however, was the deep run by reigning champion Hinkle. After the bubble burst, Hinkle had an above-average stack at his disposal and looked primed to make another deep run at the title. Unfortunately, the Missouri native was unable to win the title three years in a row, as he was eliminated from play in 20th place for $3,803.

The official final table bubble burst when Cash Carpenter fell at the hands of Chin. Other players to fall before the last hand of the day include Richard Fitzgerald (9th for $8,153), Beaufait (8th for $10,223), Thomas Moss (7th for $13,007), Michael Jensen (6th for $17,797), and Greg Jennings (5th for $22,021).

The final four players will return on Monday at 12 pm local time to battle it out for the title. Live updates from the Horseshoe Council Bluffs Main Event are available on WSOP.com.

Here's a look at the chip counts heading into Day 3:

Seat 1: Jesse Wilke - 1,035,000 (34 BBs)
Seat 2: Michelle Chin - 1,805,000 (60 BBs)
Seat 3: Mike Lang - 1,060,000 (35 BBs)
Seat 4: Michael Sanders - 800,000 (26 BBs)


 
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