We had three former champs from the Party at the Palms promotion with Eric Tycz, Cody Olson, and Anthony Rempher in the field looking to do what Doug Magee did and go back to back. Each of the three recently won a $1,500 package and partied in the Kingpin Suite. All three made a deep run, but came up a little short in the end which meant we were going to have two brand new South Dakota Champions!
After our first break our chip leader was Miron Sukalovic (pictured left) from the Thirsty Duck in Sioux Falls. Miron was at 37,000 chips and took out a player when he trapped him with pocket aces to take all of his chips. Second in chips was Monte Evans from Starters in Redfield, who is very experienced in championship events and was off to a fast start. Home town favorite Andy Anderson also held a nice chip lead with a good cheering section behind him.
Once chip up was over and break had concluded players started flying out as bigger stacks picked on the smaller ones and next thing you know we were down to exactly four tables with forty people still remaining. Things started tensing up as players could feel themselves getting closer to the payday. Each decision and hand became harder and more critical.
One of the early chip leaders Monte Evans (pictured right) took a couple of horrible beats when the board after the flop read 8 high. Monte got all of his chips in with Kings against another player who held 6-8. The river brought another 8 doubling up the other player and cutting Monte's stack in half. He then moved tables and got all his chips in again pre-flop with Kings against A-10 and you guessed it an Ace on the river to eliminate one of the early chip leaders.
Pretty soon we were at our final 10, the players and chip stacks entering the final table were:
Seat 1) Ethan Erdman from NY, NY in Aberdeen with 80,000
Seat 2) Bill Broucek from NY, NY in Aberdeen with 241,000
Seat 3) Philip Gatliff from the Stadium in Madison with 72,000
Seat 4) Craig Brunson from NY, NY in Aberdeen with 59,000
Seat 5) Steven Gunckel from Starters in Redfield with 115,000
Seat 6) Dale Stanley from NY, NY in Aberdeen with 47,000
Seat 7) Andy Anderson from multiple bars in Sioux Falls with 13,000
Seat 8) Miron Sukalovic from Shenanigans in Tea with 41,000
Seat 9) Jake Obermeier from Bucks in Sioux Falls with 319,000
Seat 10) Jarvis Evans from Thirsty Duck in Sioux Falls with 32,000
Jake Obermeier, who had the most combined points in the state of SD for the Desert Heat promotion was dominating the tournament and final table with his chip stack and it was looking like everyone else was playing for second place to see who was going to Vegas with Jake. Miron was the first to get knocked out with Andy not too far behind him. For a while it looked like Andy was destined to make a comeback by continuously winning his all-ins, but his luck ran a bit short.
After a bit of lull, we lost Jarvis Evans, Ethan Erdman, Steven Gunckel, and Phillip Gatliff. Out of the remaining four players, three of them were from Aberdeen and Jake with the most chips was the only Sioux Falls player left.
In one of the oddest hands of the night Craig Brunson (pictured left) raised to make it 100,000 total on Jake's big blind. Jake had to make the call for another 80,000 and did. Jake thought Craig was all in and flipped his cards over exposing pocket 9's. The flop came Q-J-x and Jake was first to act. Jake declared, "All In" and put the pressure on Craig for his tournament life. Craig went into the tank for about a minute and ended up folding showing A-K.
Craig was not able to make a come back after losing a good chunk of his stack to Jake in the previous hand and was eliminated in fourth place. Three-handed play continued for about 15 minutes as Jake was putting pressure on the short stacks of Bill Broucek and Dale Stanley. Both players only had stacks that could survive a few more hands and Dale Stanley was the first to have his tournament on the line versus Jake. Unfortunately for Bill, Dale was able to double up and now it was time for Bill to try to do the same thing. The cards weren't as lucky for him and he ended the night in 3rd place as our bubble boy.
With that we had our winners! Congratulations to Jake Obermeier (pictured right) from Borrowed Bucks in Sioux Falls and Dale Stanley from New York, New York in Aberdeen!