In a busy month of big buy-in tournament events, the World Series of Poker Circuit Main Event provided players a reasonable buy-in and an enormous prize pool. Local poker players from Oklahoma and Texas took advantage of a Circuit event in their backyard. Players came out in droves to put up their $1,600 and take a shot at a first place prize of $232,706.
Choctaw Resort and Casino Poker Room Host T.J. Cloutier, along with WSOP Tournament Director Jack Effel and Jimmy Sommerfeld, talked briefly to the crowd before the cards got in the air. Among those in the starting field were the likes of Berry Johnston, Tommy Vedes, Allen "Chainsaw " Kessler, Tom McEvoy, Ylon Schwartz, Manish Patel, Chris Tryba and WSOPC National Championship points leaders Brett Schwertley and Kevin Calenzo.
At the conclusion of the first day of play, the field had already been whittled down to 174 players. With top 81 spots finishing in the money, it wouldn’t be long before the money bubble was reached. Just four hours into Day Two action, play went round for round with 83 players remaining. During round for round play, four players were knocked out and they split 80th and 81st place money. By the end of Day Two, only 14 players were left standing to battle it out for the WSOP Circuit Ring.
Neal Seiwert was the chip leader going into the final day of play with nearly two million in chips. However, after losing two major coin flips, one with A-K against pocket eights and with queens against A-K, Seiwert was knocked out of the Main Event in 13th place.
Just two hours into play, the final table of ten was set. The chip counts by seat assignments at the final table were as follows:
1. Jeff Gibralter 3,300,000
2. Victor Haynes 2,385,000
3. Drazen Ilich 1,100,000
4. Andrew Watson 990,000
5. Charles “Woody” Moore 450,000
6. Bobby “Shooter” Hempkins 675,000
7. Huy Nguyen 4,120,000
8. Traci Brown 490,000
9. Robert “RCW” Cheung 900,000
10. Shallum Lynch 1,795,000
10th Place - $17,662
To say that Charles “Woody” Moore plays well in WSOP Circuit Main Events would be an understatement. In this year’s Circuit alone, Moore has made two Main Event final tables, including winning the Horseshoe Southern Indiana WSOPC Main Event.
Coming into the final table as the short stack, Moore put his stack in the middle and Bobby “Shooter” Hempkins reshoved behind him. The action was folded around and Moore turned up while Hempkins showed . The board ran out and Moore was unable to improve his hand.
Woody took home $17,662 for his tenth place finish and already has a seat locked up for the World Series of Poker Circuit National Championhip in May.
9th Place - $21,979
Robert “RCW” Cheung raised to 170,000 before the flop and was called by Huy Nguyen in the big blind. The flop came down and both players checked. When the hit on the turn, Nguyen checked to Cheung, who bet out 260,000. Nguyen raised all in for 1,200,000 and Cheung immediately made the call. Cheung turned up for a turned set of eights but Nguyen flipped up for a turned straight. The on the river did not fill Cheung up. The Vancouver, British Columbia native and WSOP bracelet winner was sent to the rail in ninth place for $21,979.
8th Place - $27,680
Just moments after Cheung was eliminated, Drazen Ilich raised to 150,000 only to be reraised by Andrew Watson to 450,000. Huy Nguyen then four-bet all-in having both Ilich and Watson covered. Ilich mucked his hand and Watson went into the tank. Finally, he announced call and turned up . He was well behind Nguyen though, who showed the . The board came and the poker pro from Tulsa was sent home in eighth place for $27,680.
7th Place - $35,290
After Victor Haynes made it 200,000 from under the gun, Shallum Lynch made it 600,000 to go from the small blind. Haynes then moved all in for his last 1,160,000 and Lynch made the call. Haynes turned up but we behind Lynch’s . The flop came and Haynes was still looking for a king to take the lead. However, the on the turn sealed his fate and eliminated the Norman, Oklahoma native in seventh place for $35,290.
6th Place - $45,552
Traci Brown raised to 200,000 before the flop and was called by both Drazen Ilich and Huy Nguyen. The flop came down and it was checked to Ilich, who bet out 310,000. Nguyen made the call and Brown mucked her hand. The turn was the and Nguyen checked again. This time, Ilich moved all in for about two million and Nguyen announced call. Ilich turned over for a flush draw but was behind Nguyen’s . The on the river did not make Ilich’s flush and the two time Circuit Ring winner was sent to the rail in sixth place for $45,552.
5th Place - $59,537
After Shallum Lynch raised to 200,000 before the flop, Bobby “Shooter” Hempkins moved all in for his last 900,000 chips. Lynch made the call and turned over . Hempkins was in trouble with . The board of was no help to Shooter. The Fairview, Texas poker legend was eliminated from the tournament in fifth place for $59,537.
4th Place - $78,828
Jeff Gibralter raised to 255,000 from the button and Huy Nguyen made the call from the small blind. The flop came down and Nguyen bet out 755,000. Gibralter made the call and the turn was the . Nguyen, having Gibralter covered, announced that he was all in. Gibralter went into the tank for several minutes. Finally, he made the call and turned over for two pair. Unfortunately for Gibralter, Nguyen flipped over for a better two pair. The river was the and Nguyen sent the Rockwall, Texas poker pro home in fourth place for $78,828.
3rd Place - $105,764
Just moments later, Huy Nguyen raised to 250,000 from the button and Shallum Lynch moved all in for 2,100,000 from the big blind. Nguyen could not call quick enough as he flipped over to Lynch’s . The board ran out and the man they call “Master” was eliminated from the Main Event in third place for $105,764.
2nd Place - $143,462
When heads up play began between Huy Nguyen and Traci Brown, Nguyen held a chip lead of 14,100,000 chips to Brown’s 2,100,000. It only took a few hands for Brown to find a spot to move all in. She pushed with only to have Nguyen wake up with . The board ran out and Brown was unable to improve.
Traci Brown, an Austin, Texas native who finished 11th in the WSOP Ladies event this summer, was the runner up in the WSOP Circuit Main Event. She was also celebrating her birthday at the final table. She now has 143,462 more reasons to celebrate.
Additionally, with the 75 points she earned for second place, Traci Brown won the Choctaw WSOP Circuit Casino Championship and earned the automatic seat to the WSOPC National Championship.
1st Place - $232,706
As soon as the last hand was over, Huy Nguyen was mobbed by his huge group of railbirds. The chant of “Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” was heard over and over in the Choctaw Events Center. The 25-year old online poker pro from Norman, Oklahoma was crowned champion of the World Series of Poker Circuit event and took home $232,706. In addition, he collects his first WSOPC Ring and gets the automatic seat to the WSOP Circuit National Championship in May.
As things are wrapped here at the Choctaw Resort and Casino, it seems only appropriate that we leave you with what Huy Nguyen’s rail would yell out every time he took a pot. It was also his post on Twitter the moment he took the title…
“Payyyccceee!!!!! Ship it!!!!!”