Trager captures Delaware poker title

October 01, 2017, Michael Young, Dave Lukow, Jo Kim  

Juergen Trager, a plumber by trade, of Dagsboro, Del., won the Delaware Poker Championship at Dover Downs Hotel and Casino. He was one of 281 entries, which swelled the prize pool to $134,178. He started Day 2 in eighth place and increased his stack throughout the day. When the final table reached seven players, there was a chop of $29,925 each, though they played it out for the crown. Joseph Cashen from Severna Park, Md., battled for more than an hour heads-up with Trager for the title, but Trager’s K-8 made a full house on the final hand. All guarantees in the series exceeded.

So with all of those guarantees being met, why not host some more? Dover Downs will offer guaranteed events every weekend this month. Saturdays at 11:15 a.m. will sport a $5K guarantee for $100. There’s also the popular Getaway Weekend Oct. 6-9, including a $30K guarantee Oct. 7. During the week, players who participate in three of the four 11:15 tournaments Monday through Thursday get a free seat into the Friday 11:15 tournament. Call the poker room for details.

MARYLAND LIVE: The WPT runs through Oct. 4. The main event has a $2M guarantee and starts Sept. 30.

Connecticut

FOXWOODS RESORT CASINO: Jeremy Meacham edged Sean Thomson to capture the World Series of Poker Circuit’s $1,675 main event in Mashantucket. Meacham earned $156,735 and Thomson got $96,957. There were 486 entries.Chris Tryba beat Kevin Balcom heads-up to take the top spot in Event 1 for $14,664 while Balcom earned $9,058.Robert Corcione was third in that $365 event, which attracted 188 entries for a $56,400 prize pool.

Panja Lymsuan won Event 2 ($580 NLHE) for $119,949. Jean-Philip Maltais got $74,250 for second in an event that had a remarkable 1,035 participants for a $675K prize pool.

Quintin Tyson earned $16,575 after winning Event 3 ($365 NLHE). Eric York of Maryland was second ($10,244) as the event drew 221 entrants for a prize pool of $66,300.

Other winners included John Sciacca (Event 4, $25,060), Paul Freedman (Event 5, $31,605) and France’s Olivier LaCoste (Event 6, $17,640) with a win in Event 6. Up next is the World Poker Finals.

New York

TURNING STONE RESORT & CASINO: Canada’s Veerab Zakarian outlasted 252 players to win the $570 opening event of the Empire State Hold’em Championships in Verona. The victory paid $25K as 253 players ballooned the $100K guarantee to $126,500.Leonid Kaplin earned $24,077 for second, while Timothy Wildrick collected $12,650 for third. Gary Fritz won Event 2 ($210 bounty) for $2K, followed by Don Crimmen ($1,342) and Grant Sbrocco ($1,342). Adam Foster captured Event 3 ($210 NLHE) for $16,476, followed by Lucio Procopio ($10,426) and Jody Bell ($6,982). Jon Crowley won the final event ($150 bounty) for $825.

SENECA NIAGARA: Blake Napierala won the $600 main event Summer Slam for $23,316. Kristan Mackiewicz, who was second, had a better payout because of an earlier deal, earning $30K. Scott Hosbach (third) and Sahar Khajavi (fourth) earned $27K apiece.
With 440 participants, the tourney had a prize pool of $220,869, more than doubling the guarantee.

Atlantic City-Philadelphia

Big Stax returned for its 22nd series in August at Parx Casino near Philadelphia with another record-breaking number in the $340 opener. There were 2,805 registrants, crushing the record of 2,557.

Joe “Worm” Palma, who won a Big Stax series opener on May 1, took the lead again at the final table.After 16 grueling hours of play on Day 3, Palma once again claimed the trophy and collected $120K, which was nearly twice what he took home just months before.

“The ability to navigate my way through the field is one of my strong points,” Palma said. “I try to have fun while maintaining my game. Everything else takes care of itself.”

Palma, recently made one of SugarHouse’s poker ambassadors, cashed in 16 events this year, which nearly doubled his earnings to $844,617.

There were 1,395 entries in the $550 Big Stax 500 for a prize pool of $686,375.The final 33 players returned on Day 3, when Greg Nerenberg, Shankar Pillai and David Zemel agreed to a chop for $ 94,467, $78,404, and $77,874, respectively. Some of the notables at the final table were Chris McNally, who came into Day 3 as chipleader, and Abe Faroni.

The series wrapped with some of the best tournament players in the area at the final table of the $1,500 main event, which drew 447 players for a $650,385 prize pool.Mike Lavenburg finished runner-up for the second time in the Big Stax main.

“It obviously sucks not getting a win after playing for so long and being so close,” he said.“But it’s easy to forget how fortunate I was to getting there.Only thing to do is work harder and try again.”

Renata Colache, first time at the final table, also was the first to bust for $9,235.Other notables at the table were Lavenburg, Vinny Pahuja, Chris Horter, Jason Rivkin and Zhaoxing Wang.

However, the last man standing on a three-way chop was Max Young with the most chips.Young, Lavenburg and Pahuja decided on a deal that paid them $120,930, $90K and $85K, respectively.
Big Stax returns Oct 8-30.

MOHEGAN SUN POCONO DOWNS: The poker room has announced the Pa Poker Classic, which will run Nov. 26-Dec. 2. The main event is $550 and is Dec. 2. There will be plenty of satellites for the main event so call the poker room for details.

Meet Lexy Gavin

Lexy Gavin is a full-time poker pro in New York.

How do you stay disciplined in maintaining a schedule for cash games and tournaments? I have a set schedule in New York, where I play cash full time.I definitely prioritize cash games over tournaments, which is why I typically only travel for main events on the tour.However, I do think I am going to dedicate more time for tournaments this coming year.

How did you get into poker as a career? I began my career playing full time online primarily on PokerStars.After (Black Friday), I moved to Canada with a group of friends.I was very fortunate in that I had the opportunity of learning from some of the greatest pros. After a couple years of living in Canada, I decided to make the switch to live poker and moved to Vegas in 2012 to become a live pro.

How much are you involved in charity poker events? I work with two non-profit organizations. I am on the board of directors for Support the Kid, a children’s cancer charity. We raise and distribute funds to families who have children who are battling cancer. (I’m) VP of marketing for the Charity Series of Poker, an organization that holds tournaments in different casinos to raise money for various charities. — Jo Kim