The inaugural MSPT Showdown Series $1,100 Main Event at San Diego’s Sycuan Casino attracted 676 entries over three starting flights, which resulted in a $654,220 prize pool. After a full weekend of play, it was 31-year-old Alejandro Jauregui, a poker dealer from Bay 101 who called in sick just so he could play, emerging victorious to claim the title and a $140,665 prize.
While Jauregui, who hails from Salinas, California, has been playing poker most of his life, it was far and away his largest win. In fact, according to The Hendon Mob, he had just a pair of cashes for $18,090. That because when he does play, he’s usually grinding the cash games.
This weekend, some friends from all around the country were congregating in San Diego, so he flew down on Saturday and fired a single bullet into the tournament. Now, he’s an MSPT champ with a juicy six-figure score on his poker résumé.
MSPT Sycuan Main Event Final Table Results
Day 2 saw 80 players return to action and with 72 slated to get paid it didn’t take long for eight players to fall by the wayside including Satoshi Tanaka, Joe Zona, and bubble boy Terence Reid, who fell when his king-jack suited failed to overcome ace-ten in an all-in preflop spot.
Among those to cash the tournament but fall short of the final table were start-of-day chip leader and three-time bracelet winner Adam Friedman (10th – $9,813), Day 1c chip leader Trung Le (11th – $8,505), MSPT veteran DJ Buckley (12th – $8,505), bracelet winner Sandeep Pulusani (14th – $7,196), Kyna England (20th – $5,168), former MSPT champ Ken Baime (22nd – $5,168), Day 1b chip leader Alex Greenblatt (24th – $5,168), and 2004 WSOP Main Event champ Greg Raymer (30th – $4,318).
The final table started with a bang as three players – Haiau Han (8th – $11,122), Britton Scheibe (7th – $15,701), and Andrew Moreno (6th – $20,281) – all fell within 20 minutes. That left the remaining five players fairly deep, but then Jauregui caught fire. First, he picked off a big bluff from Jose Araya to pull out to a chip lead, which he extended by knocking out Jason Fitzpatrick when ace-seven held against queen-jack all in preflop.
Jauregui began three-handed play with a significant chip lead over his two opponents. First, he dispatched Eli Loewenthal in third place when ace-six held against ace-deuce, and then he set about applying pressure to Jesse Jones.
The duo jostled for a bit before getting in a coinflip with Jones holding two overs against pocket sixes. Jauregui flopped a set, and Jones was left drawing dead on the turn to put an official end to the MSPT Showdown Series at Sycuan Casino.
Armando Mesina Wins MSPT Sycuan Casino $360 Regional Event
During the stop’s first weekend, the kickoff MSPT Sycuan Casino $360 Regional Event attracted 1,047 runners over three flights, but only 131 of them returned for the Day 2 finale. It took 10 hours of play before the final seven players agreed to a seven-way ICM deal that ultimately saw chip leader Armando Mesina, a 65-year-old retired Navy veteran, claim the trophy and $33,329 in prize money.
Prior to the win, Mesina had $83,444 in live tournament earnings according to The Hendon Mob. His MSPT score proved to be a career-high, just surpassing the $31,805 he received for finishing seventh in the 2013 Legends of Poker $150 Mega Million VII at the Bicycle Casino back in 2013.
MSPT Sycuan Regional Event Final Table Results
|1||Armando Mesina||6.5 million||$33,329*|
|2||Young Hilliard||5.655 million||$31,265*|
|3||Tiffany Nguyen||5.295 million||$30,312*|
|4||John Yi||3.63 million||$25,177*|
|5||Derek Jensen||1.99 million||$18,484*|
|6||Matthew Blagg||1.68 million||$16,956*|
|7||Michael Rosado||1.455 million||$15,781*|
*Denotes 7-way ICM chop.
It took less than 45 minutes of play on Day 2 for 19 players to fall, including 2020 WSOP.com $1,000 NLHE Championship bracelet winner Nahrain Tamero. That left the top 112 players getting a piece of a $312,600 prize pool.
Among those to cash but fall short of the final table were Day 1a chip leader Happy Spaulding (9th – $4,376), Kobe Brown (15th – $2,626), Adrianne Hall (21st – $2,157), Anthony Bland (42nd – $1,219), WSOP bracelet winner and Day 1b chip leader Ben Moon (55th – $1,125), Bob Chow (62nd – $1,032), Brad Sailor (63rd – $1,032), and Harold Singleton (80th – $907).
At the final table, Philip Bruning began as the third-biggest stack, but two coinflips in near succession ended his run in eighth place. First, his pocket eights failed to hold against ace-king, and shortly thereafter he got it in with pocket threes and once again losing, this time to ace-jack. Bruning took home $5,002 for his eight-place finish, and not long after the final seven agreed to an ICM deal to end the tournament.
The MSPT continues next weekend with the 2021 South Dakota State Championship at Silverado-Franklin Casino in Deadwood, South Dakota. PokerNews will be on-site offering live updates from that tournament. For more information, click here.
MSPT Showdown Series at Sycuan Casino Winners
All told, the 11-event series catered to a combined 3,306 entrants over its slate of trophy events, with thousands of others participating in satellites, nightly tournaments, and cash games. In those trophy events, a hefty $1,288,650 in prize money was awarded, truly making it a million-dollar festival.
|Event #1: $360 Regional Event||1,047||$312,162||Armando Mesina||Chula Vista, CA||$33,329|
|Event #2: $400 PLO||75||$25,125||Aaron Wallace||North San Juan, CA||$8,543|
|Event #3: $250 NLHE Sunday Feast||251||$50,200||Fadi Yakou||San Marcos, CA||$7,221|
|Event #4: $200 NLHE Ladies Event||79||$13,825||Victoria Davidson-Castillo||West Covina, CA||$4,701|
|Event #5: $360 Seniors||175||$51,900||Joseph Szegedy||Winnetka, CA||$7,981|
|Event #6: $250 NLHE Turbo Super Stack||200||$40,000||Bob Chow||Las Vegas, NV||$6,098|
|Event #7: $360 PLO8||93||$27,900||Ken Po||Seven Hills, OH||$8,369|
|Event #8: $250 NLHE Tag Team||418||$41,800||Lena Evans & Tavish Margers||Beverly Hills, CA & Santee, CA||$9,798|
|Event #9: $200 NLHE Hump Day||161||$32,218||Jennifer Craddock||Ocala, Florida||$8,531|
|Event #10: $1,100 Main Event||676||$654,220||Alejandro Jauregui||Salinas, California||$140,665|
|Event #11: $360 Last Chace Showdown NLHE||131||$39,300||Anthony Potis||Scranton, Pennsylvania||$8,870|