Sunday, November 27, 2005

Last to First - Marti Wins

Fifty-three players tonight and Marti showed us how it was done.  She was amazing at the final table.  She started out in 10th place with only 1180 chips when the final table was seated.  She was down to 485 chips on the second hand but won that and doubled up.  Then she doubled up again, and again and again.  Before anyone knew it she was the chip leader.  It finally came down to Marti and TravDaddy in the heads up match.  The tide shifted back and forth but it was Marti’s night to shine.

BunaBoy1234 was in charge the first hour.  I’m afraid that I was one that helped him get there.  We were both cruising along that first hour and doing well.  Then, about 45 minutes into the Affair, I got AKs in the big blind.  I raised and BunaBoy called.  When the flop came AK2 I thought I had him.  All-in on the flop and BunaBoy made the call.  I had flopped top two pair and was happy with the call but BunaBoy held pocket deuces and I was out in 43rd place.  BunaBoy doubled up on that hand and that was good enough to give him the chip lead at the first hour break.  We were down to 40 when the first break came around.
  1. BunaBoy1234 = 4585

  2. SusieQue = 4540

  3. froth = 4460

  4. nicnac16 = 4280

  5. Papoorboy = 3890

  6. MagikCowboy = 3550

  7. Mongoose = 3450

  8. Angel 1221 = 3100

  9. von ebb = 2810

  10. Iw3077  = 2630

The second hour is always the shake out hour in the HA.  With 40 still in the running going into the second hour we didn’t seat the final table before the second break.  But we had a reshuffling of the leaders.  Here are your second hour survivors.
  1. Dime04 = 18680

  2. FatalisMacina = 10555

  3. Papoorboy = 8925

  4. nicnac16 = 7310

  5. SusieQue = 6905

  6. ThreesRWild = 6610

  7. Travdaddy11 = 5025

  8. Iw3077 = 4070

  9. winforlife = 3345

  10. Angel 1221 = 2970

It was nearly 20 minutes into the third hour before the final table was seated.  And look closely at this list.
  1. FatalisMacina = 23625

  2. Dime04 = 15805

  3. Papoorboy = 7975

  4. Angel 1221 = 7870

  5. SusieQue = 6605

  6. Travdaddy11 = 6190

  7. Moxiegurll = 4800

  8. ThreesRWild = 3310

  9. winforlife = 2160

  10. marti = 1160

Do you see where Marti is?  Remember now that going into the final table the antes are now 75 and the blinds 300/600.  She doesn’t have enough chips to last the first orbit.  She has to make a move quickly and hand two was the beginning of her charge.  All-in for her last 410 holding Ah Ts and FatalisMacina calls with Qd Th.  The board ends up 5s Jc 2d 6d Jh and Marti has doubled up to 2280.

Hand 5 and Marti steals a 2250 pot pre-flop showing JJ.

Yes, there are others playing this table and hand 11 found Dime04 and Angel 1221 see the flop come Ks 5d 4d.  Angel led out for 4050 and Dime made the call.  The turn was 8h and looked like it was no help for either.  Angel pushed in with her last 1145 holding Qh Td and Dime called showing Ad 9d.  He must have been hoping for the flush to fill but the 3s on the river was all he needed as his Ace held up and Angel 1221 was the first casualty of the final table.

The very next hand saw the flop come 2d 2h Jc.  SusieQue came over the top of Papoorboy holding Jd Th – top pair/good kicker.  But Papoorboy wasn’t concerned about the jacks – he held Kc Kh and when the turn brought another deuce SusieQue was gone in 9th place.

The next hand found winforlife in the big blind holding only 360 chips.  He was all-in posting the blind holding 8d 5c.  Marti called holding Kh Jh and Travdaddy called with his pocket sixes.  The board ended up 8h Qh As Js Kc and Marti raked another pot.  Winforlife was gone in 8th place but finished in the money this week.

Hand 19 and Marti is in the big blind with pocket aces.  Moxiegurll has her covered and raised 1600 preflop.  All fold to Marti who re-raised to 2400.  Moxiegurll was holding pocket nines and pushed the rest of her stack into the middle.  Marti made the call and the aces held up.  Marti had doubled up again.

Moxiegurll went out on hand 30 after Marti mortally wounded her the hand before.  Moxie was all-in posting the small blind holding Qs 7s.  Papoorboy held pocket Kings and that was it for Moxiegurll this week.

ThreesRWild was the next to fall.  The antes were up to 125 and the blinds 600/1200.  TRW was down to 3185 and posted the small blind holding big slick.  All-in before the flop but both FatalisMacina and Papoorboy came along for the ride.  FatalisMacina matched up a queen on the turn and that was the winning hand.  ThreesRWild was gone and we were down to five.

Hand 47 was a big one.  Travdaddy was the short stack with only 12465 and Papoorboy just had him covered with 13955.  Four saw the flop come 7s 5h Ac.  They both got it all-in on the flop and Travdaddy showed Ad Tc.  But Papoorboy held As Kc.  The turn card decided the action when the Td made an appearance.  Travdaddy doubled up and Papoorboy was mortally wounded.

The very next hand Papoorboy went all-in holding Jh 7h and Dime called holding Kc 8d.  It looked bad for Papoorboy but the flop paired up his seven and it held.  

The next hand a Papoorboy is all-in again, this time with Td 8c.  You can’t fault the play – he had to double up to survive but this time Marti made the call and had a real hand.  Pocket Jacks and Papoorboy was gone in 5th place.

We are now at four and Travdaddy has the chip lead with FatalisMacina, Marti and Dime following in that order.  Marti took the chip lead on the very next hand when she paired up a ten and took a 15300 pot from FatalisMacina.

Hand 52 and Dime goes over the top all-in against Travdaddy before the flop.  Dime held Ks Jc but Travdaddy showed As Kh.  The king on the flop was all that hit them and Dime was sent to the lounge in 4th place.  Travdaddy was now back in a comfortable lead.

They passed the blinds around for the next 11 hands and then hand 64 was dealt.  With the antes now 150 and the blinds 800/1600, FatalisMacina raised to 3200.  Travdaddy smooth called.  The flop came Js 8s 7d, FatalisMacina bet 1600 and Travdaddy re-raised to 11650 taking FatalisMacina all-in with his call.  FatalisMacina held As 9h for the gut shot straight and a back door flush draw.  Travdaddy held 8h Th for the gut shot but also a pair of eights.  The 3h 2d on the turn and river were no help to either and the pair of eights held up.  FatalisMacina was out and we were heads up with Travdaddy holding a 2.5:1 chips lead.

Marti took a big hit on hand 66 and it looked like Travdaddy was going to finish her off.  Travdaddy won the next two hands as well but then Marti stole a couple back.  Hand 71 was big.  Travdaddy raised preflop and Marti called. The flop came Qc Kc 2h and Marti bet just 1600.  Travdaddy raised to 900 and Marti called.  A second deuce came on the turn, Marti checked and Travdaddy bet 6535, exactly how many chips Marti had left.  Marti called.  Wow, what is going on here?  Gutsy call Marti – she showed the As Qh for middle pair to a very scary board.  And she made the right call.  Travdaddy turned over 3d 4d to reveal his stone cold bluff.  That pot was 41570 and now Marti had the chip lead.

Travdaddy took the lead back on hand 75.  But the very next hand Marti caught two pair on the flop and she was back in the lead.  They sparred for another 15 hands with Marti still in command.  

Then hand 90.  They saw the flop come Th 6d 7h and checked to see the turn 4h.  Check again and the river was a 3h.  Marti bet 500 and Travdaddy came over the top for 14330.  I have to agree with Marti’s call.  It looked like a very good time to steal the pot and Marti had hit the straight.  But Travdaddy held the Ah and did have the flush and the 41860 chip pot.  And now the chip lead again.

Hand 96 Marti wins 12400 to close the gap.  The nest hand gives her the very small advantage.  They spared until hand 108.  They saw the cheap flop come Qd Ad Tc.  Trav checks and Marti bets 2000, Travdaddy comes back for 10400 and Marti calls.  The turn was the 7d putting three diamonds on the board.  Travdaddy went all-in for 20260. . . . .and Marti made the call.
Travdaddy showed Td Jc – third pair, flush draw and straight draw.
Marti showed Ah 9d – top pair and straight draw.
The 9s on the river decided the tournament giving Marti two pair and the win.

It was great to see our hostess get the win.  Especially fun was watching her climb the ladder at the final table.  Way to go Marti.

Another great week.  See you all on Saturday.


Monday, November 21, 2005

Jennifear made us all proud

Jennifear made us all proud in the $150,000 Guaranteed MTT tonight on UB.  She finished 17th out of 726.  That was well into the money.  Jenn was cruising along with quite the gallery.  I lost count of how many HA friends cheered her on from the rail.  Krazy Kanuck and SusieQue even stopped by to voice their support.  Her final hand was a heartbreaker.  Jenn held pocket Aces on a ten high flop with two diamonds.  Jenn held the Ad.  She managed to get all her chips in and get called by K T.  Looking good darlin, but a king of diamonds on the turn left her with just the hope of  the flush or another ace.  That was eleven outs but not good enough.

Way to go Jennifear.  I hope you will write up your side of the story when you recover.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Froth Caps the Holdem Affair

Froth and Msrinny battled all night and it was down to those two at the final table. But it was Froth’s night to shine and shine he did. His first Holdem Affair win is in the books.

The early going in the final table was very one sided with the big stacks gobbling up the little stacks. All except Dime04. He started in 10th place and, with some marvelous play, succeeded in building that stack into the money. He finished in fourth place but at one point held the chip lead at the money table. Awesome play Dime.

The first hour, and actually this whole tournament, was marked by very aggressive play from the very first hand. We had lost 20 players by the first hour break and still had 27 left in the running. That is very unusual for this event. Msrinny02 and Froth were forcing the action with Jewelcard presiding over his table. The first hour saw this on the leaderboard:
  1. msrinny02 = 11685

  2. Froth = 9870

  3. Jewelcard = 4130

  4. MdnghtSn49 = 3330

  5. nicnac16 = 3140

  6. SusieQue = 3130

  7. Sengar = 3115

  8. marti = 2630

  9. Jennifear = 2580

  10. Dime04 = 2300

The second hour is really when this tournament begins for most of the players and it was no different this week. It took 50 minutes to bust out the next seventeen players so we could seat the final table. MdnghtSn49, SusieQue, and nicnac16 were victims during this phase. Jennifear, Txmom22, Tai pan, I pass gas and inxsdude were gainers. I finally made it back to the final table after a two month break. Msrinny02 and Froth continued to go after each other during this time and Froth was getting the best of it when we went to the final table. Here are your survivors when we got down to ten.
  1. Froth = 23700

  2. msrinny02 = 12965

  3. Jennifear = 6950

  4. Txmom22 = 5840

  5. I pass gas = 4020

  6. inxsdude = 3740

  7. Tai pan = 3725

  8. Jewelcard = 3575

  9. Sunbob = 3240

  10. Dime04 = 2745

I think the big story of the final table was Dime04. He sat down with the shortest stack and this final table was eating up the short stacks. But Dime04 was the exception. He built his stack as the rest of us “shorties” fell and recorded his first money finish in a Holdem Affair. Simply awesome Dime.

Jewelcard was the first guppy to be gobbled up by the sharks when his QQ ran into msrinny02 with AA. It was a credit to all of us guppies that it was hand 20 before the first one fell. Tough luck Jewelcard.

I was totally card dead at the final table. At one point I almost went all-in from the big blind with 72o just because it was all I was getting. Needless to say, I was getting desperate. Finally on hand 32, I was in the small blind holding Ad 5d. The first ace I had seen in my hand. Dime called on the button so I went all-in with my last 590 chips. Jennifear went all-in behind me to force out Dime and she showed me Ks Qc. Hey, I’m ahead. This might be okay. The flop came Tc Ts 8d and I was still ahead. The turn showed Jc and I’m still looking good. But the river 9h gave Jennifear the straight and I was out in 9th place.

Jennifear lasted four more hands before her pocket tens ran into Dime with Ad Qd. The flop came low and by the river gave Dime the wheel straight. Jennifear was gone in 8th place.

The very next hand found Tai pan with red Queens and he re-raised Froth for all his chips. Froth was quick to make the call and showed pocket Aces. Tai pan joined me in the observers chat room.

Oops, I haven’t mentioned Dime04. By now he was in 3rd place with 12935 chips.

Hand 43 and it was time for inxsdude to make a stand holding Ac 9c. His last 1415 went in and msrinny02 made the call holding Ad Th. The board missed them both and inxsdude was gone in 6th place.

We were down to the money table and Dime04 was in third place and getting paid for the very first time. He had climbed from 2700 chips to 13000 chips. On hand 65 he took a big pot (21895) from Froth when he caught Froth holding pocket Jacks to his pair of ladies. That gave Dime the chips lead over Froth and msrinny. Froth went on a bit of a rush and edged back into the lead by the 72nd hand.

It was all Froth and Dime through the 80’s with Froth getting the best of it and pulling away.

Hand 86 and I pass gas is in 5th place but is looking at As Kh. All-in to open for 4145 and msrinny decided to make the call with her pocket sevens. The flop came Ah 4c 5d and stinky was looking good. The turn brought a 3d and the river the 6c. msrinny had hit her straight. Wow, tough luck I pass gas.

Hand 96 was a big hand for Dime. He limped with pocket kings and msrinny joined him from the big blind. The flop came 3d 8s 4c. Dime raised to 5600 and msrinny chose to call. The turn was 7c and msrinny checked to Dime. Okay msrinny, I have you covered. Do you want to play for it all? Yep, said msrinny, and turned over 8h 6s. Top pair and a gut shot draw. It didn’t look good for msrinny. But miracles do happen in poker and the 5h on the river doubled up msrinny and dealt a huge blow to Dime’s future in the tournament.

On the very next hand msrinny took a 13200 chip pot away from Froth and with it the chip lead. Has the tide turned?

Okay, hand 101 and it is time for Dime04 to make his stand. Msrinny was the one to call – again. Dime only held Jd 4d and msrinny had Ah Ts. No luck for the Dime and he had to settle for 4th place money.

For the next 17 hands it was pretty much msrinny and Froth pounding on each other. Txmom caught a couple of blinds but basically had to lay low and pick her time. Hand 118 was the chosen hand. Msrinny opened for 4575 and Txmom smooth called. The flop came Qh Tc 2s. Txmom was holding pocket fives and hoped that flop had missed msrinny as she went all-in for her last 1055 chips. Txmom was right, the flop had missed msrinny. Msrinny held Ac Kc but still made the call. A gut shot draw and two over cards. Only ten outs but msrinny was the dominant stack and the call was less than 10% of her stack. It was the right play – the Jd came around the turn and gave msrinny her straight. We were now heads up and that gave msrinny a huge advantage 53630 to 16870 over Froth.

They sparred until hand 130 when Froth raised to 3850 and msrinny re-raised to 11800. Okay lets dance was the response and all the chips were in the middle. Froth showed Qc 8c. Wow, gutsy. Msrinny held Ac Jh. The flop came 5d 7s 6c and now Froth had a draw. The turn decided it, though, giving Froth a queen. Msrinny was still a big leader but Froth was getting stronger.

Three hands later and they were all-in again after the flop came up Qd 6h 9h. This time Froth had a hand, As Qh. But msrinny had the draw with Jd Tc. No help this time for msrinny and now Froth has the upper position.

Hand 144 saw the end. When the flop came 5h Th 7c, msrinny forced the play into the middle. Holding Ts 3c, she had top pair. Froth held Kd Tc and also had top pair but a much better kicker. That king was the difference.

Great game to everyone. Congratulations to Froth and to Msrinny02 for their fine play.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and…..



Monday, November 14, 2005

Iowa State Upsets No. 22 Colorado, 30-16

Wow, my Cyclones did it again. We upset the North Division leaders, #22 Colorado, 30-16. It was our defense this week that was the difference. Steve Paris and Brent Curvey each made huge defensive plays to help Iowa State stay in the running for a share of the Big 12 North championship with a 30-16 victory over No. 22 Colorado on Saturday night.
Paris returned a fumble 66 yards for a touchdown after Dobbins knocked the ball loose and Curvey, a 305-pound defensive tackle, rumbled 66 yards for a TD with an interception to secure the Cyclones' fourth straight victory and prevent Colorado from clinching the division title.
Now we need to beat Kansas the last game of the season and Nebraska needs to knock off Colorado. If that happens we will have a share of the North Division Title for the second year in a row. I don’t know if this old Clone could handle that.
The great thing is that we are almost guaranteed a good bowl game this year. That alone is enough for me.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Woody13 Wins the Holdem Affair

I think it was Dan Harrington that said, “Many people think poker is a card game.  They are wrong -  it is a betting game.”  If that is truly the case then the final three played poker at a very high level tonight.

From hand #73, when Hemi Henry was eliminated in fourth place, until hand #104 when Woody13 knocked out Tai Pan for the victory, only two other hands went to showdown.  And one of those was when ADM busted out in 3rd place.  This kind of action may be a little boring to watch from the rail but it is like a pitcher’s duel in baseball, the game was being played very well.

Thirty-six entries went at it in this week’s Holdem Affair.  As usual, the competition was heavy.  This event just gets better and better each week.  It was one hour and forty-eight minutes into this go round when the final table was seated.  Your final table looked like this:

  1. woody13 = 14055

  2. ADM = 10475

  3. Tai Pan = 6330

  4. Sengar = 6160

  5. Hemi Henry = 5000

  6. winforlife = 3685

  7. Dime04 = 2770

  8. Txmom22 = 1600

  9. d o double d = 1485

  10. marti = 955

It was hand 17 before the first victim fell.  The antes were 25 and the blinds 150/300 when winforlife opened UTG for 600.  Hemi Henry was in the big blind and the only one to call.  The flop came Ad Ac 4h, Henry checked and winforlife bet 300.  Henry check-raised to 600 and winforlife reraised back to 3400.  Henry chose to just call.  The turn brought the 7c.  Hemi Henry pushed in his last 875 and had winforlife covered.  Winforlife made the call and had to feel good that his trap had worked – he was holding Ah Kh.  He had flopped trips with the top kicker.  But wait – Hemi Henry just turned over pocket fours.  He had flopped a full house.  That was it for winforlife this week.

For the next 20 hands Marti was nursing her short stack, trying to get back into the game or at least survive.  Three times she survived all-in and doubled up but the antes and blinds just wore her down again.  Finally on hand 38 she started with only 345 chips.  The 50 ante and the 300 big blind took her all-in before the flop holding a Negraneau type 5 3o hand.  Sengar made the call from the small blind holding Js 6d.  The board missed them both and Marti was out this week in 9th place.

Hand 44 and it is time for Sengar to claim a pot holding As Qc.  Antes 50, blinds 200/400 and he opened for 2100.  Woody, with the chip lead, re-raised taking Sengar all-in if he called.  Sengar was happy with his holding and made the call.  Oh, chit, Woody just turned over pocket queens.  Sengar has only three outs.  The flop came low, 4c 3s 2c, and actually gave Sengar more outs with the gut shot straight and the backdoor flush draws.  But it wasn’t going to happen this week.  No miracle card on the river and Sengar was gone in 8th place.

Just two hands later Dime04 was feeling short with only 1010 and in the big blind.  He held Js Qh, not a bad hand to make a stand.  Woody raised to 1750 UTG and it was folded around to Dime.  Push it in and take your chances man.  And it was the right play.  Woody showed Ah 6s.  Only a slight favorite.  But it was just enough, the board missed Dime entirely and the river brought the 6h to make it official, Dime04 was sent to the rail in 7th place.

The very next hand it was Txmom22 that was desperate.  Wow, I don’t have to report that very often.  Marsha is usually one of the people pushing things around at the table.  Rarely is she the short stack making a desperation play.  I’m guessing we had a case of “dead cards” this week.  All-in before the flop holding Kh Jh and it should have been a great play.  ADM was in the big blind holding a very weak 7 3o.  But the poker gods laughed at Txmom this week and sent the 3d on the flop to bust up the play.

And we were down to the money table, nearly two and a half hours into the Affair.
  1. Woody13 = 19415

  2. Tai Pan = 12960

  3. Hemi Henry = 8935

  4. ADM = 7220

  5. d o double d = 3985

What followed was true poker.  For the next twenty hands it was jab and parry, thrust and block. And it wasn’t just Woody bullying the table.  They all participated in this sword fight.  Not a single hand was shown down until hand 64 when d o double d pushed it all-in pre-flop and was called by ADM.  Good plays by both.  D o double d showed 6s 7s, a good push given the table texture.  ADM held Kh Kc and it was an easy call for him.  The kings held up and that was it for d o double d.

Hand 73 and Hemi Henry is down to his last 835 before he posts the ante and big blind.  That took him all-in and Th 2s was his ammunition.  Not good enough to go up against Woody13 holding Jd Qd.  To add insult, Woody hit his straight on the turn.  Henry was gone in fourth place.

The betting wars continued and the psychological battle was intense.  By hand 90 ADM had taken over the chip lead.  He and Woody battled hard for the next few hands with ADM getting a little bit of the better of it.  But hand 94 was decisive.  ADM raised pre-flop to 2000 and Woody smooth called from the big blind.  The flop came Ac Kh 6d.  Woody check raised and ADM answered by pushing his dominant stack into the middle.  Woody made the call holding Ad Tc and ADM showed As 8h.  The Tc held up and that gave Woody13 more than 75% of the chips at the table.

ADM and Tai Pan battled hard, but they just weren’t going to overcome that stack.  ADM went out in third when his Ad 9s was out drawn by Woody with Kd Td.  The Th on the flop was all it took.  The last hand was some of the same.  Tai Pan was all-in holding Kc Qh but in true Doyle Brunson fashion, Woody won with Qc 3c when the 3h fell on the flop.

This was great poker – real poker.  Thanks to all at the final table.  I’m glad I got home in time to watch it.  This week I hope to be in the middle of that action.


Sunday, November 06, 2005

ISU 45 - Kansas State 17

Can you believe it? My Cyclones won again. They demolished Kansas State 45-17. Looks like we are going bowling again this year. We are 6 – 3 and bowl eligible. Now we just have to finish the year strong and get to a good bowl.

Stevie Hicks is back. Could he really be the difference. ISU is 6 – 0 with him in the backfield and 0 – 3 when he was injured and on the sidelines. I’m not such a super fan that I can answer that question but if he is the difference, get that man a bodyguard.

Oh, by the way, the Hawkeyes lost. Tooooo Bad.

Kate Starbird Won

Kate Starbird won the Holdem Affair tonight.  The headline almost read that he totally demolished the final table but Winforlife  had something to say about that in the heads-up match.  Win finished a very solid second and Marti came back from cruising the Caribbean to join us for the evening  and finish third.  

It was a wonderful night for a tournament.  Thirty-nine players sat down to welcome Marti (aka Umbrella Lady) back from her cruise.  We all had a great time listening to her stories as she took our chips.  I’m afraid my tournament game was a little rusty this week.  I got way too aggressive with AQs and busted out in 22nd place.  Oh well, I’ll do better next time.

The final table didn’t get seated until well after the second hour break.  This was a hotly contested event this week.  Your final table looked like this:
  1. Ckick = 11910

  2. CowboyWillie = 7580

  3. Kate Starbird = 6885

  4. Rocknfish = 6185

  5. MdnghtSn49 = 5720

  6. navalbronco = 4860

  7. Marti = 4415

  8. Winforlife = 4245

  9. MagikCowboy = 4110

  10. ThreesRWild = 2590

The blinds were already 300/600 with a 75 ante when the finalists sat down so you would think that some people were getting desperate.  But that wasn’t entirely the case.  These are good players that know how to play the short stack in a situation like this.  It was hand 9 that was the first significant hand.  CowboyWillie limped and Marti min raised to 1200.  ThreesRWild went all-in with 1990 and had Marti covered when she made the call.  TRW had pocket sevens but Marti had two Aces and took the pot.  

That left TRW with only 175 chips and after posting his ante and small blind he was all-in on the next hand.  This was an interesting one.  Kate Starbird pushed all 4410 chips UTG, I’m sure intending to isolate ThreesRWild, but MdnghtSn49 made the call all-in as well.
MdnghtSn49 showed Qc Jc.
ThreesRWild showed 4s 3c.
Kate Starbird showed As Qh.
The board missed them all ending up 8h 9d 5s 2d Kh and Kate knocked out two birds with one bet.  We were down to eight.

By hand 17 the antes are now 100 and the blinds 400/800.  There were 2000 chips in the middle now before anyone bet and CowboyWillie said “I want them” when he raised Kate’s limp.  Kate made the call to see the flop come Js Qc 3h.  Kate bet 1005 – the exact amount to take Willie all-in with his call.  CowboyWillie held Ah 9s, a very good hand, but Kate showed two fives.  The 7d on the turn and the river Tc didn’t hit Willie and he was out in 8th place.

Just five hands later Ckick woke up with pocket eights and made it 2500.  Kate Starbird re-raised to 9400 taking Ckick all-in with his call.  Ckick made the right play but how was he to know that Kate held two red tens.  When the Tc came on the flop it was all over for Ckick and our two, final table chip leaders were gone in 22 hands.  Kate Starbird had knocked out the first four players and now had a commanding chip lead with over 1/3 of the chips in play.

Hand 27 and Navalbronco found himself in the big blind and only 335 chips after he posted the ante and the blind.  He knew it was “all-in with any two cards” before the cards got there. Rocknfish and Marti both made the call.  The flop came 8d Ad 4s.  Rocknfish bet 800 on the flop stringing Marti along.  The turn brought the 2d and that wasn’t enough for Marti to call Rocknfish a second time.  Before the river card was revealed they both turned over their cards.  What is this?  Navalbronco has Kc Ks.  But what terrible luck as Rock held Ah Jc and had flopped top pair.  That was all it took as the river sunk Navalbronco with a 9s.  And the money table was set.  That was fast.

The antes and blinds went up to 125/600/1200 by hand 30 and that meant MagikCowboy was in trouble with only 1610 chips in the big blind.  He was forced to call Kate Starbird holding just 7d 3h against Kate’s big slick.  It was really no contest but the poker gods laughed at Magik and gave Kate the Broadway Straight..

Now it is hand 36 and Rocknfish has a hand – black pocket eights look mighty good four handed.  Kate opened the pot for 2800 and Rocknfish pushed all 8020 chips into the middle.  But Kate had over 30,000 chips so thought very little of making the call with Jc Ts.  This was your classic tournament race and it was decided in the first lap when Kate flopped a Tc.  Kate was just rolling over this table.

We were down to three now and Kate had 38420, winforlife 10740, and Marti 9340.  Mari held out until hand 47 but she was down to only 290 chips by then and all-in with 5h 3s.  Winforlife actually did the honors this time.  Don’t know what happened to Kate here.  Winforlife held Qd Js.  The flop missed them both and it looked like marti might live to see another hand when the turn revealed the 5d but the Qc came strolling down fifth street and the heads up match was on.

Kate had Winforlife more than doubled but that didn’t stop winforlife from playing hard.  He lost the first hand and then went on a rush winning the next seven hands and actually took the chip lead by hand 52.  He held that chip lead and even had Kate down 41830 to 16670 by hand 68.  

The deciding hand came on hand 70.  The antes were 150 and Kate posted a small blind of 800 holding only 16670 chips.  Winforlife had 41830 when he posted the 1600 chip big blind.  Kate completed in the small blind and win raised to 5100.  Kate responded by going all-in.  They had been sparring back and forth this way for several hands but this time winforlife made the call.  
winforlife showed Kh Td.
Kate Starbird showed Ts 7s.
It looked like it was over.  The flop - 5s Ac Qc - made it look even bleaker for Kate giving win a gut-shot straight draw to go with his two over cards.  But around the bend on the far turn what is that I see?  Oh my, the 7c to pair up Kate.  That was all it took to turn the tide.  A lowly seven of clubs.  That gave the chip lead back to Kate and Winforlife was never able to recover.

It actually took 48 more hands for Kate to finish it off and it happened by coming from behind in another race situation.  Winforlife put it all in the middle with 4s 4c and Kate called with Kh 8h.  But those fickle poker gods were emphatic that this was the final hand and flopped Jh 5h 9h.

What an amazing heads-up match and a great final table.  There just isn’t much you can do when it is your opponent’s turn to win.  Great game to all, especially the final table.  That was very fun to watch.  Now I have to sharpen up my game so I can join you next week.