By Christopher Cosenza
The seventh annual Arizona State Ladies Championship has come to a close in the Arena Poker Room at Talking Stick, and it had quite the turnout. Nearly 300 players descended upon the Scottsdale casino to generate a $59,400 prize pool. In the end it was Lara Freeman of Tempe who captured the title and $14,256.
“It’s all very exciting,” said Freeman, a poker dual-rate supervisor for Harrah’s Ak-Chin for the past year. “I have been on Cloud 9 ever since.”
She defeated Angela Allison of Glendale heads-up for the prize, but not without a little good fortune.
“The key hand was I pushed all-in with A-2 and she had A-7, but I caught a deuce and had a massive chip lead after that. The final two ladies, Angela and R.J., they were both sweet and very good players.”
Allison earned $8,762 and Raena Janes of Tucson won $5,940 for third. Every player in the top 10 hailed from Arizona. This was the biggest score of Freeman’s live career, though she had won a large tournament online.
For women who didn’t get to experience this event at the spacious Arena Poker Room, (or even if you did get to experience the state championship) there will be a $75 ladies tournament on Oct. 14 at 11:15 a.m.
FT. MCDOWELL CASINO: If you have a tight bankroll but still want to play for some tournament cash, be sure to check out the new $1K guarantees at the Ft. McDowell poker room. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays at noon and 4 p.m., the buy-in is a mere $5. There are $5 rebuys and a $5 add-on, but for the price of a Subway Footlong you can compete for a guaranteed $1K prize pool. Sunday nights at 7 there’s another $1K guarantee, but the buy-in, rebuy and add-ons increase to $10.
HARRAH’S AK-CHIN: The last NFL game of the night on Sundays and Mondays will feature the Splash Pots promotion. For touchdowns, all cash games will be splashed with $50, followed by $25 for field goals and $100 for safeties. Promotions are always subject to change so be sure to call the poker room at 480-802-5138.
CASINO DEL SOL: The poker room is hosting a $25K freeroll Nov. 13-17, limited to the first 180 qualified and registered players. Play 50 hours from now until Nov. 4 to qualify, plus you can earn 500 more chips for every 10 hours played beyond 50.
Also, ask about the football raffle promotion that runs until Feb. 3; it involves giving away a lot of cash. And there are second-chance giveaways Oct. 28, Nov. 25, Dec. 30 and Jan. 27.
WILD HORSE PASS: Splash pots are back for football season, including college games. The promotion runs Saturday-Monday. Call the poker room for details (800-946-4452) and be sure to use your Players Club card when in the room for added amenities.
DESERT DIAMOND CASINO: Are you an early riser who loves to play tournaments? The poker room at Desert Diamond has the Cup of Coffee Tournament on Monday and Thursday mornings at 9:30, though registration begins at 8. The $35 event gets you 2K chips, and if at least 10 players enter you’ll get $500 added to the prize pool. The field is capped at 40 players. Call 520-342-1810 for details.