Six started the action this Saturday, but just two remain after the opening day of play at the second-ever Alpha8 tournament at the Seminole Hard Rock.
The table began as a murderer’s row of some of the top talents in the game, as Byron Kaverman, Jason Mercier, Jake Schindler, Dan Colman, Bryn Kenney, and Noah Schwartz each ponied up $100,000 for what would be Alpha8’s first-ever winner take all tournament.
The first player to fall was Kenney, who got short stacked early before busting at the hands of Jason Mercier. However, Mercier would lose two crucial pots to Kaverman to find himself on the short stack and out in fifth place not long after, unable to capture his second Alpha8 title.
The war of attrtition next took its toll on the other Alpha8 champion in the field, Dan Colman. The youngster, who sits third on the all-time money list after a phenomenal performance in 2014, saw his stack slowly dwindle before he moved all-in with A-5 only to get called by Schindler’s K-Q. Schindler hit a queen on the turn to eliminate Colman and take a substantial chip lead.
Throughout the afternoon, it was Schwartz and Schindler who were taking turns atop the counts, but with Colman on the rail, Schindler had almost 100,000 more chips than his next closest competitor. Schwartz evened things up though, winning a 126,000-chip pot off Kaverman in a hand that lasted over ten minutes with Kaverman tanking to Schwartz’s all in for almost five minutes before folding.
Schwartz finished Kaverman off a little while later in a coin flip to send last season’s WPT World Championship runner-up home in third, leaving Schwartz and Schindler to battle it out heads-up for the sole payday.
When heads-up play began, Schwartz held the slight lead with 321,000 chips to Schindler’s 279,000. After around 45 minutes of heads-up play though, Schwartz managed to extend his chip lead to 3:2 margin, putting him in great position to get redemption for his fourth place showing at the Alpha8 at Bellagio last month.
These two will be back in action at 12pm ET Sunday to play down to a winner. We’ll be here covering every hand from shuffle up and deal until someone walks home with $585,000.
Noah Schwartz – 374,000
Jake Schindler – 226,500