Saturday, April 21, 2012

Event 21 Recap

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Twice is nice for Jeffrey Gurfinkel (Hollandale Beach, FL) who wins the final event of the Borgata Spring Poker Open, the second Borgata title of his career.

Gurfinkel, who earned $14,505 for the win, edged out Flavio De Oliveria, Nick Guinto, Al Frampton, Ken Mezaros and Anthony Glante at the final table, who finished in 2nd through 6th places respectively.

"Team Brooklyn wins another," says Gurfinkel while beaming with his New York pride. "It feels great."

Gurfinkel was a force through most of the tournament and continuously had a top five chip stack.

"I always had chips," says Gurfinkel, who won his first Borgata title in the 2010 Summer Open. "I was running over the table and there was only one time that I got my chips in bad."

That key hand came just before the final table when he was behind with J J vs the Q Q of Brian McKane (Holmdel, NJ).  But a jack on the flop knocked out McKane in 12th place and gave Gurfinkel a commanding chip lead.

After the elimination of Stephen Moy (New York, NY) in 11th place, the final table was set and the action was fast and furious.  Thomas Confrey (10th), Tom Squerra (9th) and John Womack (8th) were the first to go before the tournament's quick ending.

The day began with 267 players putting up a total buy-in of $53,400.  The recognizable faces included Joe Liberta, John Del Rossi, Jimmy Wong and Grace Sun, the highest finishing woman (22nd/$6,903) in the Championship Event.

But they all failed to make the money.

The Borgata regulars who did cash included Howard Wolper (22nd), 5th place finisher Mezaros and runner-up De Oliveira who took home $8,547 for second place.

Even though Gurfinkel is a Florida resident, he loves his New York roots and loves winning at Borgata.

Final Table Results

1st Jeffrey Gurfinkel (Hollandale Beach, FL) $14,505
2nd Flavio De Oliveira (Long Branch, NJ) $8,547
3rd Nick Guinto (Brigantine, NJ) $4,921
4th Al Frampton (Maple Shade, NJ) $3,988
5th Ken Mezaros (Freehold, NJ) $3,108
6th Anthony Galante (Bronx, NY) $2,590
7th Mark Becker (New York, NY) $2,072
8th John "JW" Womack (Lauderhill, FL) $1,554
9th Tom Squerra (Old Bridge, NJ)$1,036
10th Thomas Confrey (New Windsor, NY) $673

Event 21: 1st Place - Gurfinkel

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

 Jeffrey Gurfinkel (Hollandale Beach, FL)

Chip leader Jeffrey Gurfinkel closes the deal in a wild and crazy finish.  "I had chips the entire tournament," says the ring holder of a WSOP circuit event.

"I live in Florida, but represent New York and Team Brooklyn," he says.

This is Gurfinkel's second Borgata trophy after winning a title in the 2010 Borgata Summer Poker Open ($19,000). 

With this win Gurfinkel wins the title and $14,505.

Event 21: 2nd Place - De Oliveira

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Flavio De Oliveira (Long Branch, NJ) 

Flavio De Oliveira is a Borgata regular who loves the $30,000 guarantee Wednesday tournaments. De Oliveira is originally from Brazil and earns $8,547 for his second place finish.

Event 21: 3rd Place - Guinto

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Nick Guinto (Brigantine, NJ) 

Nick Guinto says, "go Flyers," and that they "have" to win game 6 against the Penguins if they're going to win the series. 

For Guinto, third place is an improvement over his 4th place finisher in the penultimate event of the 2011 Borgata Spring Poker Open.

Guinto improves by one spot and earns $4,921 for finishing third.

Event 21: 4th Place - Frampton

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Al Frampton (Maple Shade, NJ)

Al Frampton was the calming influence at the final table and is a retired fire captain.  He's a Borgata regular with multiple cashes over the years.  

Frampton earns $3,988 for his 4th place finish.

Event 21: 5th Place - Mezaros

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Ken Mezaros (Freehold, NJ)

Ken Mezaros says that when he finds time between coaching hockey and work you can find him playing Borgata poker.  He's a fire sprinkler systems contractor by day, and on this night he finishes 5th, good for $3,108.

Event 21: 6th Place - Galante

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Anthony Galante (Bronx, NY)

Anthony Galante sparred with Flyers fan Nick Guinto throughout the tournament and only has one thing to say, "go Rangers!"

Galante finishes in 6th place for $2,590.

Event 21: 7th Place - Becker

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Mark Becker (New York, NY)

The fourth time was not the charm for Mark Becker who is eliminated while holding A K vs pocket queens.  "Ace-king was hot for me until the end," says Becker.  I doubled-up three times with it."

Becker, who is recently unemployed, earns $2,072 for his 7th place finish.

Event 21: 8th Place - Womack

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)  

 John "JW" Womack (Lauderhill, FL)

"Ask any of the old-timers, they know who I am," says the fun and brash John Womack, who has more than 70 cashes and $300,00 in his poker career.

"Call me JW," he insists, but JW wishes he didn't simply call with pocket jacks on his final hand.

In a clash of big stacks, Nick Guinto raises, Womack calls and the flop comes ace high.  Womack cold shoves all in and Guinto snap calls with A 6 and now has an overwhelming chip lead.

JW finishes in 8th place and takes home $1,554.

Event 21: 9th Place - Sequerra

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Tom Squerra (Old Bridge, NJ)

 "I didn't think I'd ever get this far," says Tom Squerra, who is playing in only his third "big tournament."

Squerra is on the rail when he's beaten by a flush, but proud of making the final table.

Squerra takes home $1,036 as the 9th place finisher.

Event 21: 10th Place - Confrey

$200 + $30 Big Stack No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

Thomas Confrey (New Windsor, NY)
Thomas Confrey's tournament comes to an end while holding A♣ 10♠ against chip leader Jeffrey Gurfinkel's Q Q♣.  

Gurfinkel flops a queen and at the other end of the table Nick Guinto breaths a sigh of relief.  Guinto folded pocket 5s face up and would've been eliminated set over set.

"I had a great time," says Confrey. "But if you don't like bad beats, don't play poker."

Confrey was referring to a beat he took just before the final table by Guinto. Confrey had pocket queens against the J 9 of Guinto who flopped a straight on a board of K Q 10 to double up and and cripple Confrey who flopped a set.

Thomas Confrey finishes in 10th place, good for $673.