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2017/18 WSOP Circuit - HORSESHOE BALTIMORE

Sunday, May 06, 2018 to Monday, May 07, 2018

Event #11: $3,250 No-Limit Hold'em High Roller Re-Entry

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  • Buy-in: $3,250
  • Prizepool: $111,000
  • Entries: 37
  • Remaining: 0

EVENT UPDATES

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Tuesday, May 8, 2018 3:43 AM Local Time


Blake Whittington - Winner of Event #11 

When Blake Whittington busted from the Horseshoe Baltimore Main Event in 17th on Sunday night, he had to take a moment to clear his head.

“It was just crazy because last night I was really frustrated with how the Main Event went,” He explained. “I was short all day and I just grinded a very small stack all day and busted 17th. So I just took a lap around the casino and gathered my composure and I just said, ‘alright let’s register this High Roller.’”

By the end of play on Day 1, he bagged the second largest chip stack.

“I just got very lucky when I registered late last night to make a lot of really good hands that were good at showdown,” Whittington explained. “I didn’t really have to face any difficult spots. I started in level nine and I ended up bagging second in chips.”

For Whittington, the final table went mostly smooth, save a couple rough spots. Approaching the money bubble, he doubled up John Richards with ace-queen against aces.

“We went from eight handed to six handed really fast,” Whittington said, explaining how Alex Rocha, Justin Liberto, and Duane Hunton all fell in quick order. “There was a crazy hand where we went from eight to six. Right when we came back ,I won a flip against Alex [Rocha]. Then when I doubled John [Richards], ace-queen to aces, I started to hurt a little bit, thinking this was gonna’ be… We were all about even stacked at that point, so now it was gonna’ be a battle.”

But Whittington was fortunate enough to go on a heater as just the right time.

“I chipped up from about 200,000 to 350,000 in about two orbits,” he said. “When the bubble burst, I got really lucky against John [Richards], to win jacks versus ace-king.”

From there, Whittington had a stranglehold on three handed play. He held the chip lead for most of play, lost it for a bit but got a bit lucky in a spot with ace-four against Clayton Jiang’s pocket eights to eliminate Jiang from the tournament.

From there, he and Jonathan Gilliam had a back and forth battle that lasted a bit before Whittington made a crucial call with top pair to put Gilliam in the danger zone. Whittington won just a few hands later with his jack-six besting Gilliam’s jack-ten.

“They both played excellent, I want to make that clear,” Whittington explained. “It was a really tough battle. I’ve known Clayton since he started coming around the Circuit at the very beginning of him playing tournaments. Now I see him on Live at the Bike, and wow. He’s like this end boss cash game player. It was an honor to play with them.”

Whittington doesn’t play High Roller’s very often, but he explained that he has a lot of fun playing with them, saying that they challenge him in a different way.

“To be honest, I haven’t really played many of the High Rollers,” he said. “This is probably my third or fourth one. But I like them a lot. I enjoy very much playing with the best players and they challenge me. A lot of it you can chalk up to run good for sure. It was a really tough field. I just feel like a lucky bastard to have beat them all.”

On Monday, across the room, Whittington’s friend Eric Salazar was also at a final table. The two reached heads-up play within minutes of each other.



Blake Whittington and Eric Salazar

“It definitely felt like we needed to both delivery because it would be such an awesome story,” he said about Salazar. “We were cheering for each other between hands and across the room like, ‘Let’s go Eric!’ and ‘Let’s go Blake!’ It was pretty awesome for sure.”

And deliver they did. Both Salazar and Whittington captured rings on the same night, just a few yards away from each other.

For Whittington, this victory is a testament to getting his mind right and to clearing out his headspace after struggling with bankroll and money management early in his career.

“I’ve been out of the game for a while, a couple years,” he said. “I have had really horrible money management decisions. I was just never responsible. I think I’m finally starting to get things figured out. And I think that my results for the last couple months are a testament to the clear mind space that I’m in.”

Whittington said he plans to spend most of his summer in Vegas, hoping he can continue his heater.

For his win in the High Roller, Blake Whittington took home $49,950 as well as his second World Series of Poker Circuit ring.


Monday, May 7, 2018 11:21 PM Local Time


Blake Whittington - Winner of the WSOP Circuit High Roller at Horseshoe Baltimore.

Blake Whittington moves all in on the button and Jonathan Gilliam considers his options for just a second before he calls all in for about 145,000.

Whittington:   
Gilliam:   

The flop is     and Gilliam's jack-ten is still best, but Whittington has picked up outs to a flush.

The turn is the  , changing nothing. But the   falls on the river, giving Whittington the flush and the High Roller Championship here at Horseshoe Baltimore.

 

Jonathan Gilliam - Runner up in the High Roller at Horseshoe Baltimore.

Blake Whittington - WSOP Circuit High Roller at Horseshoe Baltimore Champion ($49,950)
Jonathan Gilliam - Eliminated in 2nd place ($33,300)

Monday, May 7, 2018 11:08 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington calls from the button and Jonathan Gilliam raises to 65,000 from the small blind. Whittington calls.

The flop is     and Gilliam bets 70,000. Whittington calls.

The turn is the   and both players check.

The river is the   and Gilliam bets 105,000. Whittington snap-calls.

"Good call. Ace-high," says Gilliam. Whittington tables    for a pair of queens and Gilliam mucks his cards.

Blake Whittington - 865,000 (43 bb)
Jonathan Gilliam - 245,000 (12 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 11:00 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington raises to 52,000 on the button and Jonathan Gilliam calls.

The flop is     and Gilliam checks. Whittington bets 67,000 and Gilliam calls.

The turn is the   and Gilliam checks. Whittington bets 78,000 and Gilliam folds.

Blake Whittington - 635,000 (31 bb)
Jonathan Gilliam - 475,000 (23 bb)

Monday, May 7, 2018 10:54 PM Local Time
Level: 23
Blinds: 10,000/20,000
Ante: 3,000
PlayWSOP
Monday, May 7, 2018 10:53 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington moves all in on the button for 261,000 and Jonathan Gilliam calls.

Whittington:   
Gilliam:   

The flop is     and Whittington moves in front with a pair of aces. The turn is the   and the   river completes the board, giving Whittington the double up.

Jonathan Gilliam - 584,000 (36 bb)
Blake Whittington - 526,000 (32 bb)

Monday, May 7, 2018 10:32 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington raises to 36,000 on the button and Jonathan Gilliam checks his option.

The flop is     and Gilliam checks. Whittington bets 32,000 and Gilliam calls.

The turn is the   and Gilliam checks. Whittington bets 75,000 and Gilliam folds.

Jonathan Gilliam - 620,000 (38 bb)
Blake Whittington - 490,000 (30 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 10:15 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington calls from the button and Jonathan Gilliam checks his option.

The flop is     and both players check.

The   falls on the turn and Gilliam bets 18,000. Whittington calls.

The river is the   and Gilliam bets 30,000. Whittington snap-calls and Gilliam announces "king-high." Whittington tables    to scoop this pot with a pair of jacks and chip away at Gilliam's chip lead.

Jonathan Gilliam - 720,000 (45 bb)
Blake Whittington - 420,000 (26 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 10:06 PM Local Time
Level: 22
Blinds: 8,000/16,000
Ante: 2,000
Monday, May 7, 2018 9:45 PM Local Time
Jonathan Gilliam and Blake Whittington have returned to their seats and heads up play has now started.
PlayWSOP
Monday, May 7, 2018 9:37 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington and Jonathan Gilliam are taking a short break before beginning heads up play.

When play does resume, Whittington (525,000) and Gilliam (585,000) will return with nearly equal chip stacks.

Monday, May 7, 2018 9:33 PM Local Time

 

Action folds to Clayton Jiang (above) in the small blind and he calls. It's over to Blake Whittington in the big blind and he moves all in for 290,000. Jiang quickly moves all in as well for 230,000.

Whittington:   
Jiang:   

Jiang's tournament life is at stake, but he's out in front pre-flop. The flop is     and Whittington moves ahead with a pair of aces.

The turn is the   and the   river completes the board. Jiang is eliminated in 3rd place, cashing for $16,650.

Blake Whittington - 525,000 (43 bb)
Clayton Jiang - Eliminated

Monday, May 7, 2018 9:12 PM Local Time
Level: 21
Blinds: 6,000/12,000
Ante: 2,000
Monday, May 7, 2018 9:01 PM Local Time

Action folds to Clayton Jiang in the small blind and he moves all in for more than 400,000. Blake Worthington is in the big blind and he also goes all in for 143,000.

Jiang:   
Whittington:   

The board runs out       and Whittington will double up with two pair, kings and threes with an ace kicker.

Blake Whittington - 289,000 (28 bb)
Clayton Jiang - 273,000 (27 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 8:47 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington raises to 20,000 from the button and Jonathan Gilliam calls in the small blind.

The flop is     and both players check.

The   falls on the turn and Gilliam checks. Whittington bets 28,000 and Gilliam calls.

The   river completes the board and both players check.

Gilliam tables    for a rivered flush and Whittington mucks his cards.

Jonathan Gilliam - 536,000 (53 bb)
Blake Whittington - 200,000 (20 bb)
PlayWSOP
Monday, May 7, 2018 8:37 PM Local Time

Jonathan Gilliam is all in pre-flop for 232,000 against Blake Whittington. Whittington holds    and Gilliam has   .

It's a flip, but Gilliam connects on the     flop, improving to an ace-high straight. The   turn and   river complete the board giving Gilliam the double up.

Jonathan Gilliam - 467,000 (46 bb)
Blake Whittington - 250,000 (25 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 8:29 PM Local Time
Level: 20
Blinds: 5,000/10,000
Ante: 1,000
Monday, May 7, 2018 8:26 PM Local Time

Blake Whittington is in the big blind and calls a button raise from Jonathan Gilliam to see a     flop.

Whittington checks and Gilliam bets 18,000. Whittington calls.

The turn is the   and Whittington checks. Gilliam bets 35,000 and Whittington tanks for some time before moving all in. Gilliam snap-calls and his tournament life is at stake.

Gilliam:   
Whittington:   

Whittington has a straight to the jack and Gilliam has just a pair of jacks, but the river is the   and both players will chop the pot with a straight to the jack.

Blake Whittington - 541,000 (67 bb)
Jonathan Gilliam - 145,000 (18 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 8:08 PM Local Time

Clayton Jiang raises to 20,000 on the button and Blake Whittington three-bets to 55,000 from the small blind. Following a fold from Jonathan Gilliam, Jiang calls.

The flop is     and both players check.

The   falls on the turn and Whittington bets 44,000. Jiang calls.

The river is the   and both players check.

Whittington tables    for a pair of sixes, but Jiang shows    for a pair of queens.

Blake Whittington - 517,000 (64 bb)
Clayton Jiang - 363,000 (45 bb)
Jonathan Gilliam - 230,000 (28 bb)
Monday, May 7, 2018 7:47 PM Local Time
Level: 19
Blinds: 4,000/8,000
Ante: 1,000
PlayWSOP
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