ST. LOUIS, MO. – The World Series of Poker Circuit Events continued at Harrah’s St. Louis with the conclusion of Ring Event #3, Omaha High Low Eight or Better. The winner of the two-day long tournament was Kurt Jewell.

Jewell, who won the largest Main Event field in WSOP Circuit Event history back in October, added another gem to his gallery of outstanding results so far this Circuit season, which now includes five final table finishes - two of those in Main Events.

The 25-year-old graduate of Eastern Kentucky University with a degree in sports management took home $13,206 for his latest cash and a second WSOP Circuit Event gold ring.

The $345 buy-in event attracted 181 players, an impressive turnout for an Omaha 8 event and was second in size only to the event held earlier this year at Choctaw which drew 182 players.

It was a stacked final table with long-time WSOP bracelet-holding veteran “Captain” Tom Franklin and Circuit ring champion La Sengphet joining Jewell among the final nine. 




Chip Count

Nathan Hogan

Chesterfield, MO



Kristopher Tong

St. Louis, MO



Eliot Spiro

St. Louis, MO



Jim Rye

Gravois Mills, MO



“Captain” Tom Franklin

Gulfport, MS



Kurt Jewell

Franklin, KY



Alex Hoff

O’Fallon, MO



Tom Henry

St. Louis, MO



La Sengphet

Dallas, TX





Ninth Place                 

The official final table began just after 4:00 pm with the blinds at 6,000/24,000 and limits of 12,000-24,000. The final table’s short stack, Tom Henry was unable to gain any traction and got his last chips in on the turn against Alex Hoff on a      board. Henry was ahead with two pair, 2’s and 3’s, but the   on the river completed Hoff’s nut flush, giving him the pot. Henry made his early exit to collect $1,189 for ninth.

Eighth Place

Besides Henry’s bust out hand, Hoff himself was unable to get much going in the final stretch and was forced all in from the big blind. Franklin led the betting through the river with Jewell coming along. Jewell scooped both the main and side pots with two pair. Hoff, a blackjack dealer from nearby O’Fallon, MO was eliminated in eighth place, worth $1,490.

Seventh Place

La Sengphet saw her stack eroded down to a couple of big blinds after being quartered in multiple pots. Her final hand saw her all-in with      vs. Franklin’s     . The       was more kind to Franklin, leaving Sengphet with a seventh place finish worth $1,897. With that however, came 20 valuable points toward her bid for a seat in the WSOPC National championship, putting her in strong contention at 95 total points.

Sixth Place

Kristopher Tong was poised to go deep in the final table, but after being crippled in a hand with Eliot Spiro, was forced to settle for sixth place after moving all in on a     flop with      in the hole vs. three other players. Franklin pushed the other live players out of the pot with      and took it down after making a straight with a nine on the turn. Tong pocketed $2,456 for sixth.


Fifth Place

Down to one big blind, it looked as Jim Rye would be the next to go but managed to quadruple up to survive Tron Potter who busted in fifth. Rye was unable to fully recover however and made his way to the payout table a short while later. Fourth and fifth places paid $4,326 and $5,891, respectively


Third Place

Play had come down to Spiro, Jewell and the captain. With blinds now at 20,000/40,000 and 40k-80k limits, Franklin and Spiro went heads up to an     flop, after which Spiro put Franklin all-in. Franklin was unable to complete his diamond flush draw after a   turn and   river, yielding the pot to Spiro who made two pair, aces and threes.

Franklin is long-time poker veteran who made his first major tournament cash in the 1990 World Series of Poker Main Event. He has over 2.75 million in lifetime tournament earnings. For his efforts today, he added another cash to his lengthy resume, worth $5,891.


Second Place

Heads up began three hours into final table play with Spiro holding a marginal lead over Jewell. Jewell however, quickly gained the upper hand and soon had his opponent on the ropes. Down to a couple of blinds, Spiro called Jewell for his remaining chips after a flop of    . Spiro was drawing to a wheel with      vs. Jewell’s     , but was left looking to take the low pot after a   on the turn. The   on the river however was no good for Spiro and it was over.


Spiro is from St. Louis, MO. A cash game player, he dabbles in tournaments “here and there” which he says nowadays he plays mainly for leisure. Although disappointed for not taking home the ring, he said he was glad to see “a good guy like Jewell” take it down. Second place paid $8,158.


Jewell’s second WSOP Circuit victory earned him $13,206 and WSOP Circuit ring #2. He also picks up 50 points toward a seat into WSOP Circuit National Championship. However, with his seat already secured from his Main Event win in Hammond, the points will serve no more as an adornment to what has been a phenomenal 2010/2011 WSOPC season, which includes five final table appearances.


What makes Jewell’s win even more impressive is that he states that this was his first Omaha 8 tournament ever.


“I was literally Googling Omaha 8 to see what the optimal starting hands were and to get some tips,” said the quick study.


Since his $242,909 cash at Hammond last October, Jewell says that life has been great; full of good poker and good friends. He says he will continue playing the circuits in preparation for the National Championship which takes place in May at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

Still to come are 25 events and 7 ring events. See the complete Harrah’s St. Louis Circuit schedule and previous results here.  The WSOP Circuit at St. Louis runs through April 12th. You can find the complete 2010/2011 WSOP CIRCUIT SCHEDULE here.