Inaugural Gold Strike winter poker event thrives

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In Tunica, Christmas wasn’t the only highlight in December. Gold Strike Casino kicked off the holidays with the Winter Poker Classic, which ran Dec. 2-12. This was the first of what will be an annual event, according to Ken Lambert, regional director of poker for MGM Mississippi.

“This was the first time Tunica has held a poker event in December, so we weren’t sure what to expect,” he said. “The turnout was fantastic. We were very happy with the fields.”
Daily noon events ranged from $125 to $340 in a variety of games, including stud/8, PLO and, of course, no-limit hold’em; the average field was more than 120 players. The $1,080 main event pulled an impressive 174 entrants for a tournament wedged between holidays. With the prize pool just a little more than $168K it’s no surprise the final six were happy to chop, taking home $23K each.

Among those six was Louisiana’s Al Theriac, who was featured on the cover of January’s Ante Up for his first-place win at the Horseshoe’s Magnolia event. This chop brings Theriac’s winnings over the final 30 days of 2010 to more than $60K.

Terry Coleman of Alabama received the trophy and declared the “official” winner.

 Local favorites cashing in the main event included Dale Hinson (seventh, $6,751), David Rylander (eighth, $5,063) and Dina Rylander (11th, $2,363).

One impressive performance that can’t be overlooked is the play of J.W. Smith. The Dalton, Ga. resident won two of the three Omaha events, taking down Event 8 for $4,539 and Event 13 for $4,190. He also finished second in stud/8.

As we crawl toward spring, the schedule for Mississippi poker is packed with great events. The first couple of weeks of February feature the Harrah’s Tunica WSOP circuit event (Jan. 27-Feb. 14).

Just 10 days later, back at Gold Strike, the action starts again with the Delta Gold series, which runs Feb. 24-March 6. This series will follow the same event schedule of its Winter Poker Classic.

Said Lambert: “This is the second year we’ve hosted (the Delta Gold). Last year we had a really good turnout. Poker players know Gold Strike is a great place to play. We take excellent care of our guests and players never leave hungry around here.”
Gold Strike shift manager Gerald Styers said he’s looking forward to the Delta Gold, adding, “This is a fun event. Last year we had a large turnout, and we’re expecting the same this year.”

— At any of the events previewed in this column, stop by and introduce yourself to Ante Up Columnist Jennifer Gay, or add her at facebook.com/aceofjewels to keep up with news from the tournament trail in Mississippi. Send her your pictures and stories from local events for consideration in future columns.

$1,080 Main Event “Official” results
Entries: 174 • Prize Pool: $168,780
1. Terry Coleman, Muscle Shoals, AL, $55,698
2. Timothy Scooros, Daytona, FL, $30,718
3. Ryan Enis, Corinth, MS, $16,878
4. Roland Bell, Hernando, MS, $13,502
5. Alfred Theriac, Shreveport, LA, $10,127
6. Travis Eller, Cookeville, TN, $8,439
7. Dale Hinson, Byhalia, MS, $6,751
8. David Rylander, Colliersville, TN, $5,063
9. Andy Alina, Hernando, MS, $3,376

Event #1 • $125 NLHE
Entries: 151 • Prize Pool: $14,647
1. David Newman, Memphis, $4,700
2. Rachelle Henry, Marion, AR, $2,667
3. Derrie Cavins, Memphis, $1,466
4. Michael House, New Albany, MS, $1,172
5. Michael Fink, Sarah, MS, $879
6. Alan Cormier, White, GA, $732
7. Raymond McCoy, Memphis, $586
8. Edward Mayton, Wasilla, AK, $439
9. Derek Law, Houston, $293

Event #2 • $230 Omaha/8
Entries: 67 • Prize Pool: $12,998
1. David Dacus, Collierville, TN, $4,676
2. Linda Kennedy, Olive Branch, MS, $2,471
3. Kirk Fleming, St. Louis, $1,561
4. LaShun Wallace, Memphis, $1,040
5. Ted Raper, Robinsonville, MS, $910
6. Austin Harber, Robinsonville, MS, $780
7. Hye-Chin Murphy, Robinsonville, MS, $650
8. Beth Blevins, Hernando, MS, $520
9. Don Anderson, Jefferson, GA, $390

Event #3 • $230 NLHE
Entries: 178 • Prize Pool: $34,532
1. James Kizer, Collierville, TN, $11,083
2. Kevin Arrowood, Moody, AL, $6,285
3. Ralph Robinson, S. Mountain, GA, $3,453
4. Owen Hashaw, Lexington, MS, $2,763
5. Charlie Carswell, Albany, GA, $2,072
6. Stephen Garrett, Little Rock, AR, $1,727
7. Brandon Carswell, Albany, GA, $1,381
8. Mark Mattingly, Senatobia, MS, $1,036
9. Wilson Carnes, Knoxville, TN, $691

Event #4 • $230 Stud/8
Entries: 27 • Prize Pool: $5,238
1. Brad Hagemeier, Elsberry, MO, $2,095
2. Linda Kennedy, Olive Brach, MS, $1,571
3. Fred Kinnison, St. Louis, $1,048
4. Gerard Johnston, St. Charles, MO, $524

Event #5 • $340 NLHE
Entries: 216 • Prize Pool: $62,856
1. Mitchell Franks, Tupelo, MS, $20,178
2. Frank Davis, Clarksville, TN, $11,440
3. Kevin Pope, Charleston, SC, $6,286
4. William Suwada, Arlington, TN, $5,028
5. Thomas Ellis, Forest, MS, $3,771
6. Jim Sommerfeld, Southaven, MS, $3,143
7. Randy Workman, Columbus, OH, $2,514
8. Doug Bruce, Lawrenceville, TN, $1,886
9. Crystal Utley, Morganfield, KY, $1,257

Event #6 • $230 Ladies NLHE
Entries: 48 • Prize Pool: $9,312
1. Sudonna Wiley, Walls, MS, $3,353
2. Nancy Brewer, Eminence, MO, $1,769
3. Garnetta Hays, Tomkinsville, KY, $1,117
4. Lisa Crompton, Walls, MS, $745
5. Donna Hea, Trumann, AR, $652
6. Rosalynn Carswell, Albany, GA, $559
7. Crystal Keiser, Mt. Pleasant, TN, $466
8. Kathy Hartwick, Bloomfield, IA, $372
9. Christy Parham, Memphis, TN, $279

Event #7 • $230 NLHE
Entries: 147 • Prize Pool: $28,518
1. Douglas Rowley, Birch Run, MI, $9,152
2. James Caraway, Somerville, TN, $5,190
3. LaShun Wallace, Memphis, TN, $2,852
4. Joshua Jeans, Horn Lake, MS, $2,281
5. Dale Gleneck, Bartlett, TN, $1,711
6. Dave Kennedy, Olive Branch, MS, $1,426
7. Rob Bader, Ste. Genevieve, MO, $1,141
8. Preston Raines, Columbia, SC, $856
9. Hans Denton, Brandon, MS, $570

Event #8 • $230 Omaha/8
Entries: 65 • Prize Pool: $12,610
1. J.W. Smith, Dalton, GA, $4,539
2. David Todd, Cedar Hill, MO, $2,396
3. Sue Laforge, Robinsonville, MS, $1,513
4. Mike Shands, Birmingham, AL, $1,009
5. Thomas Pullens, Picayune, MS, $883
6. Hosea Trice, Atlanta, $757
7. Doug Saab, Trussville, AL, $631
8. Clark Benson, Tryon, NC, $504
9. Tony Vidmer, Nashville, $378

Event #9 • $230 NLHE
Entries: 119 • Prize Pool: $23,086
1. Kenny Dang, Memphis, $8,312
2. Jerry Quinn, Blue Springs, MO, $4,386
3. Roy Watts, Franklin, GA, $2,770
4. Ryan Potter, Southaven, MS, $1,847
5. Muoi Jones, Arlington, TN, $1,616
6. Glynn Butts, Jonesville, LA, $1,385
7. Charles Miller, Olive Branch, MS, $1,154
8. Linda Kennedy, Olive Branch, MS, $923
9. Len Emmanuel, Memphis, $693

Event #10 • $230 NLHE
Entries: 113 • Prize Pool: $21,922
1. Jose Montero, Chicago Hts., IL, $7,891
2. Gerald Thomas, Windsor, IL, $4,165
3. George Sundy, Champaign, IL, $2,631
4. Kenni Nguyen, $1,754
5. Jerry Vaughn, Eupora, MS, $1,535
6. Kenneth Snyder, Conyers, GA, $1,315
7. Emerson Sykes, Jackson, TN, $1,096
8. Wister Holt, St. Louis, $877
9. Chad Barber, Lynnville, KY, $658

Event #11 • $230 Stud/8
Entries: 16 • Prize Pool: $3,104
1. Douglas Saab, $1,552
2. J.W. Smith, $931
3. Stanley Williams, $621

Event #12 • $125 NLHE
Entries: 188 • Prize Pool: $18,236
1. Tracy Larson, Russellville, AR, $5,854
2. Steven Poink, Hernando, MS, $3,319
3. Donald Norman, Marion, IL, $1,824
4. Ricky Loyd, Wynne, AR, $1,459
5. Kennii Nguyen, Chicago, $1,094
6. James Wray, Hernando, MS, $912
7. Connie Rice, Forrest City, AR, $729
8. Howard Blacka, Independence, IL, $547
9. Daniel Kim, Suwanee, GA, $365

Event #13 • $230 Omaha/8
Entries: 48 • Prize Pool: $9,312
1. J.W. Smith Dalton, GA, $4,190
2. Doug Bruce, Lawrenceville, Ga, $2,328
3. John Poole, Trinity, AL, $1,397
4. Chun Hung, New Jersey, $931
5. Lindell Price, Memphis, $466

Event #14 • $230 NLHE
Entries: 126 • Prize Pool: $24,444
1. Ken Yates, West Memphis, AR, $7,847
2. Robert Hart, Cordova, TN, $4,449
3. Raymond Poe, Hueytown, AL, $2,444
4. Calvin Kincade, Marmaduke, AR, $1,956
5. Miguel Buenafe, Buffalo, $1,467
6. Charles Bocksnick, Jacksonville, AR, $1,222
7. Russell Rucks, Ft. Myers, FL, $977
8. David Kennedy, Olive Branch, MS, $732
9. Brent Henley, Ooltewah, TN, $488

Event #15 • $230 PLO/8
Entries: 53 • Prize Pool: $10,282
1. Jon McKamie, Walls, MS, $3,702
2. Long Dinh, Hernando, MS, $1,954
3. Richard Johnson, St. Louis, $1,234
4. Betty Davidson, St. Charles, MO, $823
5. Douglas Bruce, Lawrenceville, GA, $720
6. David Martin, Moulton, AL, $617
7. Jack Huff, Athens, GA, $514
8. Paul Morin, Robinsonville, MS, $411
9. Calvin Henley, Crossville, TN, $307

Event #16 • $340 NLHE
Entries: 181 • Prize Pool: $57,671
1. Nelce Todd, $17,382
2. Chris Thompson, $9,586
3. Salah Levy, $5,267
4. Mark Cooney, $4,214
5. Jerry Quinn, $3,160
6. Alfred Theriac, $2,634
7. Benjamin Greene, $2,107
8. David Martin, $1,580
9. Jesus Ramirez, $1,053

Event #20 • $230 NLHE
Entries: 64 • Prize Pool: $12,146
1. James Patton, Barnhart, MO, $4,470
2. Robert Webb, Lewisburg, TN, $2,359
3. James Quick, Decatur, TN, $1,490
4. Mark Miley, Eminence, MO, $993
5. Mike Shannon, Satellite Beach, FL, $869
6. Eddie Crosthwatt, Memphis, $745
7. Sanjay Sinha, Woodstock, GA, $621
8. Alton Wynn, Dresden, TN, $497
9. Mike Segre, Huntsville, AL, $372

Event #21 • $125 NLHE
Entries: 95 • Prize Pool: $9,215
1. Eddie Owens, Memphis, $3,317
2. Jim Patton, Barnhart, MO, $1,751
3. Stuart Breakstone, Memphis, $1,106
4. Muoi Jones, Arlington, TN, $737
5. Ray Blanchette, Sunset Beach, NC, $645
6. Doug Henry, Paducah, KY, $553
7. Paul Odum, Canton, GA, $461
8. Mark Taliaferro, Fayetteville, AR, $369
9. Aaron Taylor, Stray Horn, MS, $276