Steven Sarmiento just snatched his first gold ring after topping a field of 617 players in the Seminole Coconut Creek Main Event for $188,158. The 30-year old poker pro has been having an incredible year. His main event win marks his fourth six-figure cash of 2019, but his first victory of the year.

“I really feel like I found an adjusted strategy which is working very well. I’ve been having a lot of success but this is the first stranglehold win. I came in third, fourth, second…this is super satisfying,” Sarmiento said after his win.

Sarmiento’s path to victory was a relatively smooth one overall. He was near the top of the leaderboard during the first two days of play and he started the final day in the middle of the pack. Once the final table was set, Neal Corcoran was leading and kept extending his lead as he was responsible for four of the eliminations at the final table. However, although Sarmiento had an average stack, he did bring up a ton of experience and skills from his recent final table appearances.

Sarmiento kept grinding his way up and between a few crucial hands, big plays, and good cards, he found himself at the top of the counts when four players remained. He didn’t relinquish the lead till the after the heads-up play started.

“I smooth sailed. The first day I bagged 275,000, I was fourth in my flight, and the second day I pretty much cruised and had no trouble. This is a very odd tournament where I really had no issues at any point until the end when I was heads up. I had the chip lead but he took it back and I had to battle back. I got very lucky this tournament.”

Indeed, when the heads-up play started, Sarmiento had a two to one chip lead against Corcoran but he lost the advantage at some point as Corcoran put up the best fight he could to even up the playing field then take over the lead. That didn’t last long though and Sarmiento fought back and didn’t let another victory slip through, claiming the Main Event winner title.

Sarmiento spends a lot of time playing poker to improve his game and climb up the ladder.

“I feel like I study as I play, I’m not really the studying type but as I play and I gain experience and I try new things, I kind of stick to what works. So I guess you can say in a way that is the way I study.”

Sarmiento will get another chance at some big money soon as with his Main Event victory, he also punched his ticket to the 2020 Global Casino Championship.

Final Table Action

Thomas Macey was the first casualty of the official final table. Macey was down to 15 big blinds and he moved all in from early position with eights. Neal Corcoran reshoved with ace-king and flopped a king to take the lead. Macey couldn’t recover and was eliminated in 9th place.

Next out, was Daniel Couzens. Couzens needed to find a spot to double up and he shoved his last 10 big blinds under the gun with ace-four suited. Corcoran called with ace-jack from the big blind. The board was of no help to Couzens and Corcoran sent him to the rail in 8th place with his higher kicker.

Bradley Mercer hit the rail in 7th place. When action folded to him on the button, he jammed 12 big blinds with king-queen suited and Nick Yunis and was found himself in bad shape against Nick Yunis who held ace-queen from the small blind. Yunis stayed ahead, reducing the field to 6 players.

Matthew Yorra head to the payout desk in 6th place. After losing multiple big pots, Yorra was left with less than two big blinds and moved all in in the dark. He found three callers and a chance to quadruple up but couldn’t do so as Corcoran made trips to secure the pot and eliminate him,

Dominique Mosley was Corcoran’s fourth final table victim. Action folded to him on the button and he jammed 16 big blinds with king-ten only to get snap-called by Corcoran who woke up with jacks in the big blind. Mosley flopped a ten but that wasn’t good enough and his deep run ended in 5th place.

Nick Yunis started the final day as the chip leader but things didn’t go his way during the day and he was eliminated in 4th place. His run ended when he moved all in on the river with trips but that wasn’t good enough as Steven Sarmiento also had trips, but a better kicker to win the pot.

Yunis was followed to the exit by Russell Sullivan. After a raise from Sarmiento and a call from Corcoran, Sullivan moved all in for 28 big blinds with ace-queen. Sarmiento snap-called with ace-king and Corcoran let it go. The board was of no help to Sullivan and he was eliminated in 3rd place.

Neal Corcoran was the runner-up of the Main Event. After putting up a good fight heads-up, he raised all-in with ten-eight a eight-six-four flop and Corcoran made the call with ace-eight. The turn and river were of no help to Corcoran and Sarmiento stayed ahead with his better kicker to win the tournament.

Final Table Results:

1st place: Steven Sarmiento - $188,158
2nd place: Neal Corcoran - $116,291
3rd place: Russell Sullivan - $86,060
4th place: Nick Yunis - $64,423
5th place: Dominique Mosley - $48,789
6th place: Matthew Yorra - $37,386
7th place: Bradley Mercer - $28,990
8th place: Daniel Couzens - $22,752
9th place: Thomas Macey - $18,075

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