+

January Poker Tournaments




January Tournaments in Tunica Kick Off

2006, Jason Kirk  

While the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure has been a popular event the last few years, poker in January has really always belonged to Tunica. Down on the banks of the Mississippi River the World Poker Open has drawn an international cast of characters, enough to make it the second-largest tournament in the world behind the WSOP for many years. This year Tunica is even more of a hotbed than it has been in the past - not only is the WPO going on at the Gold Strike, but Harrah's is getting in on the act with its own Jack Binion WSOP Circuit just up the road at Grand Casino Tunica.

For three weeks this month Mississippi is the center of the poker universe - all the biggest names in the game will be around for the biggest variety of tournaments in one location outside of the WSOP. The WPO was scheduled to start this evening, the 9th of January, with a $500+40 No-Limit Hold'em tournament, but the Circuit at the Grand has already been going for several days. One of the highlights for winners of the preliminary events at the Grand is that they'll automatically win their way into the Main Event scheduled to start on the 24th.

The WSOP Circuit kicked off on Thursday, the 5th, with its initial $500+40 No-Limit Hold'em tourney. Exactly 940 players entered the event, creating a prize pool of over $455,000, and setting a new record for a tournament field at the Grand. A handful of well-known professionals showed up to play in the event, including 2005 CardPlayer Player of the Year Men "The Master" Nguyen, but none of them made the money. After 23 hours of play the tournament was finally decided, when Robert Sciammarella of Bay Shore, New York, outlasted Shaun Stephen of Mount Sterling, Ohio, in heads-up play.

Event #2, the $500+40 Pot Limit Omaha with Rebuys tournament, started on the 6th with a more modest field of 262 players. There were more well-known faces playing in the second event, including Dutch Boyd, Robert Williamson III, Sam "Slade" Whitt, "Captain" Tom Franklin, and Doug Carli. By the time everybody got all their rebuys in the prize pool had swollen to $228,250. That gave Michael Weyer of Jasper, Indiana, a nice payday of $68,710 for his victory over "Captain" Tom Franklin of Gulfport, Mississippi.

Event #3, the second $500+40 No Limit Hold'em event of the Circuit, began on the 7th with a new record field of 1,347 players. A whopping 170 of those players were alternates! The huge field created a monster prize pool of $652,325 and paid the top 100 finishers, making this the biggest tournament Tunica has ever seen. A familiar face outlasted a field larger than the 2003 WSOP Main Event. Gregg Merkow of Plano, Texas - the man who won the Main Event of the WSOP Circuit at the Grand in August 2005 - outlasted Day Two starting chipleader Stanley Statkiewicz, Jr., of Chicago, Illinois, to take home $170,555 and his second WSOP Circuit ring.

The WSOP Circuit preliminary events will continue throughout most of January, and the World Poker Open at the Gold Strike will kick off on the 9th and run until the 23rd. Blind Bet Poker will have recaps of the main events of both of these major tournaments straight from Tunica.

Event #1 - $500+40 No-Limit Hold'em
Jack Binion WSOP Circuit - Grand Casino Tunica
January 5th-6th, 2006


Place Player Prize

1 Robert Sciamarella $125,905
2 Shaun Stephens $61,535
3 Richard Naumer $35,670
4 Barry Mitchell $31,215
5 Nicholas Willie $26,755
6 Danny Dorcey $22,295
7 James Barnwell $17,835
8 David Kruger $13,375
9 Tom Wenitzel $8,920
10 Larry Tomaszewski $4,905
11 Billy Link Jr. $4,905
12 Joshua Woolsey $4,905
13 Calvin Crain $4,015
14 Patrick Burton $4,015
15 Eugene Hackney $4,015
16 Paul Zerwal $3,120
17 Jack Andelman $3,120
18 James Beetz $3,120
19 David Naquin $2,230
20 Yves Hentic $2,230
21 George Coe Jr. $2,230
22 Brian McKain $2,230
23 Dutter Tate $2,230
24 Jonathan Ritter $2,230
25 James Chiado $2,230
26 Arnold Meredith $2,230
27 Mark Thompson $2,230
28 Joseph Alvey $1,560
29 John Carter $1,560
30 Anthony Jenkins $1,560
31 Joshua Crook $1,560
32 Joseph Feldman $1,560
33 Kirby Brewer $1,560
34 Dennis Barette $1,560
35 Christopher O'Rourke $1,560
36 Jeffrey Stanley $1,560
37 Doug Parton $1,295
38 James Angotti Jr. $1,295
39 UT Van Nguyen $1,295
40 Eric Maruets $1,295
41 Justin Wallace $1,295
42 Rockey Morgan $1,295
43 Khiok Lim $1,295
44 Lance Province $1,295
45 Charles Lincberry $1,295
46 Jose Padilla $1,070
47 James King $1,070
48 Dale Slatton $1,070
49 Jerry Meyers $1,070
50 Kent Miller $1,070
51 Larry Rennie $1,070
52 Johnnie Short $1,070
53 Michael Bryson $1,070
54 David Milam $1,070
55 Jeffrey Lipa $890
56 William Strickland $890
57 Frederick Brown $890
58 Steve Presley $890
59 John Minor $890
60 Chris Chestnut $890
61 Damon Ramirez $890
62 Kelly Dorn $890
63 Michael Lutz $890
64 Harold Kiezrie $805
65 Edward Nobles $805
66 Ronald Bowers $805
67 Terry Millus $805
68 John Montgomery $805
69 Troy Shropshire $805
70 Raford Hall $805
71 Joseph Alvey $805
72 Josh Rudder $805
73 Mervyn Petrey $625
74 Elied Said $625
75 James Williams $625
76 Michael Hatcher $625
77 Norm Ketchum, Jr. $625
78 Jeremy Haley $625
79 Ryan Pichoff $625
80 Angel Word $625
81 Daniel Grant $625

Event #2 - $500+40 Pot Limit Omaha
Jack Binion WSOP Circuit - Grand Casino Tunica
January 6th-7th, 2006

Place Player Prize

1 Michael Weyer $78,710
2 Tom Franklin $37,900
3 Jakob Elbaz $20,825
4 Roger Kamuf $16,660
5 Elmer Thomas $12,495
6 Tony Kassouf $10,415
7 Jason Stern $8,330
8 Russ 'Dutch' Boyd $6,250
9 William Grigsby $4,165
10 John Fahle $2,915
11 Stephen Ladowsky $2,915
12 Brad Peeples $2,915
13 Douglas Carli $2,500
14 Dale Slatton $2,500
15 William Woodrum $2,500
16 Jeffrey Roberson $2,085
17 Richard Ellerman $2,085
18 Eddie Schwettmann $2,085
 

Event #3 - $500+40 No-Limit Hold'em
Jack Binion WSOP Circuit - Grand Casino Tunica
January 7th-8th, 2006

Place Player Prize

1 Gregg Merkow $170,555
2 Stanley Statkiewicz, Jr. $80,750
3 David Riddle $51,385
4 David Wininger Jr. $44,965
5 Kyle Cadman $38,540
6 Howard Reid $32,115
7 David Rice $25,695
8 Robert Lay $19,270
9 Martin Warren $12,845
10 Jason Eddlemon $7,065
11 Sean Morrison $7,065
12 Justin Truesdell $7,065
13 James Lloyd $5,780
14 Daniel Henry $5,780
15 Anthony Battistella $5,780
16 Russell Tiller $4,495
17 Ed Lark $4,495
18 David Cung $4,495
19 William Sedgewick $3,210
20 Harold Ward $3,210
21 Paul Kroh $3,210
22 Jonathan Little $3,210
23 Herbert Burns III $3,210
24 John Lavigne $3,210
25 Jeffrey Markley $3,210
26 Raymond Phillips $3,210
27 Jonhn Montgomery $3,210
28 Juan Salinas $2,250
29 Eric Branum $2,250
30 Jamie Strait $2,250
31 Timmy Byrd $2,250
32 Bobby Bowman $2,250
33 David Johnson $2,250
34 Michael Harrington $2,250
35 Robert Hard $2,250
36 Lloyd Shaddock $2,250
37 James Garrett $1,865
38 David Ginn $1,865
39 Michael Bork $1,865
40 Nicole Weimer $1,865
41 Mark Schuble $1,865
42 Gerald Thorpe $1,865
43 Donad Guinn $1,865
44 Gary Poff $1,865
45 David Milam $1,865
46 Randy Allen $1,510
47 John Jacoby $1,510
48 Russell Wagsoner $1,510
49 Steve Jones $1,510
50 Edward Kennedy $1,510
51 Richard Spencer $1,510
52 Allen DeMarree $1,510
53 Larry Savolt $1,510
54 Craig Seeber $1,510
55 Michael Lutz $1,285
56 Eric Seiler $1,285
57 Marcus Barnes $1,285
58 Mark Traweek $1,285
59 Stephen Rivar $1,285
60 Frank Szabo $1,285
61 Kenneth Grantham $1,285
62 Michael Gambony $1,285
63 David Richardson $1,285
64 Dennis Combs $1,125
65 David Atigh $1,125
66 Kenneth Diel $1,125
67 Allen D. Zwick $1,125
68 Joel Hopkins $1,125
69 Ronald Perrin $1,125
70 John Tate $1,125
71 Barry Neal $1,125
72 Marc Aubin $1,125
73 William Banks $965
74 Mark Wilos $965
75 Dexter Brown $965
76 Casey White $965
77 Amy Perry $965
78 Todd Bernstein $965
79 Jack Huff $965
80 Raymond Bellvin $965
81 Jason Foley $965
82 David Martin $805
83 Bobby Justice $805
84 Chris Wolgreen $805
85 Andrew Pachman $805
86 Steven Doran $805
87 Christopher Beagle $805
88 Billy Davis $805
89 Kenneth Stacey $805
90 Alvaro Wong $805
91 James Barnwell $705
92 Gaven Lindsey $705
93 Jonathan Mason $705
94 Kaelaine Minton $705
95 John Moore $705
96 Paolo Favarato $705
97 Gary Rouse $705
98 Kevin Hammer $705
99 Justin Jones $705
100 James Finlay $705