Jones takes care of fine field for Agua Caliente title



Mark Jones had his work cut out for him at Heartland Poker Tour’s latest stop at Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa. The business owner from Canyon Lake, Calif., faced a tough field of 260-plus players, including top pros Phil Hellmuth, Greg Raymer and HPT Player of the Year Allen Kessler.

“I am a recreational player,” Jones said before filming began at the final table for two episodes of the HPT. “So I have lots of challenges ahead of me.”

He rose to the occasion to claim the title and $90,169 from the $375K prize pool. “It’s certainly a life-changing experience,” he said of his victory.

Lily Kiletto from Manasota Beach, Fla., was looking for her first victory after racking up 21 cashes and a handful of final tables, but she had to settle for second and $55,607.

They were followed by Ron Hauser of Canada ($37,572); Dan Heimiller of Las Vegas ($26,676); Triet Nguyen of San Francisco ($20,665); Chris DeMaci from Shandon, Calif., ($16,907); Larry Kenzy from Palm Desert, Calif., ($14,090); Chris Karambinis of Chicago ($11,835) and Stanislav Barshak from Northbrook, Ill., ($9,769). The event paid 27 spots.

PECHANGA: In the heart of the Temecula Valley’s wine country, Pechanga Resort and Casino has a lot to offer. With 43 poker tables, there is always action. Whether you prefer cash games or tournaments, there’s something for everyone. Limit and no-limit hold’em and Omaha are the main games. High hands, bad-beat jackpots and splash pots are just a few of the promotions. There are daily tournaments with buy-ins as affordable as $30 and food service is available tableside.
For more information, visit

— Email Kittie Aleman at

Ante Up Magazine

Ante Up Magazine