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Free tournaments. No buy-in or gambling for money or other things of value. No prizes, trophies, bartabs, or other awards. Strictly for entertainment & sport. Must be 21. Scores are as received from the Chicago Poker Meetup Group. For information and current schedule visit:


QUALIFYING PLAYERS: Seated from left: James Sodergren, Tony Matthews, Matt Hollinger, Bret Dale, Rob Vinson, Fabian Ramos, Rebecca Hollinger, and Gordon Rosenthal. Standing: Tournament Director S. Mike Bishop. Not pictured: Erion Postoli, Chris Lackore.


1st: James Sodergren

2nd: Bret Dale

3rd: Tony Matthews

4th: Rob Vinson

5th: Fabian Ramos

6th: Rebecca Hollinger

7th: Erion Postoli

8th: Matt Hollinger

9th: Chris Lackore

10th: Gordon Rosenthal



This was a tremendous Final Table Championship! As one measure of how competitive this table was, it took almost two hours to eliminate the first player! To finally win it all, James Sodergren was "backed up to the felt" several times during the tournament! Congratulations to all players!

STARTING STACK: Each player starts with 10000 units. Units are free and have no exchange for cash, prizes, or other things of value. Each player also has one "re-entry" option for another stack of 10000 units, but only after they have gone "all-in" and busted out.

340pm 50/100 Holdem Vinson hits pocket aces first hand of the tournament
355 50/100 Holdem Sodergren's stack is dwindling. He's first to throw a black chip (5000 units) onto the table. Quickly recovers when his aces hold up vs. M. Hollingers' pocket jacks.
405 100/200 5-Stud First 5-card stud hands dealt. Early in the round Matthews slow-plays aces on the deal, is re-raised by R Hollinger on 3rd Street. Matthews re-raises & takes a nice pot. In picture below the table contemplates an early hand of Five-Card Stud. Erion Postoli has joined the table in upper left seat.

430 200/400 5-Stud Hollinger v. Hollinger. Matt calls all-in w/ 10's on 3rd st. Rebecca calls w/ AQJ. She catches a K on 4th but on 5th street still has no pair. Matt improves to nearly 14,000
440 200/400 5-Stud M Hollinger hits another big 5-stud hand. His 88 holds up vs. Rosenthal's AQ and he wins a nearly 10,000 pot.
450 350/700 Omaha Lackore is first to get stung in Omaha. Uses re-entry coupon.
455 600/1200 Omaha R Hollinger calls Rosenthal all in with 44-- Omaha vs. AKK8. Hollinger catches a 4 on the turn. The trips hold up and she's back to 8,000. Rosenthal is down to 6,000.
505 1000/2000 Omaha All players still at the table. Only one re-entry at this point.
507 1000/2000 Omaha Rosenthal re-enters after Vinson's Q's hold up in Omaha
515 1000/2000 Omaha Matthews hits a huge Omaha hand vs. Sodergren all-in & R. Hollinger. Sodergren is tapped out of first stack and re-enters.
520 1500/3000 Omaha Dale hits huge Omaha hand all-in. His pocket aces fill up on the river. Dale triples.
525 1500/3000 Omaha Postoli re-enters
530 1500/3000 Omaha Rosenthal is the first eliminated when Ramos goes all-in blind for 7,000 and finds 99KK in his hand.
535 1500/3000 Lowball 1st hand of lowball is dealt. Lackore is out in 9th.
550 2500/5000 Lowball Postoli's 9 low holds vs. M Hollinger's 10 low. Both drew just one card. Postoli is up to nearly 30,000. Hollinger re-enters
555 2500/5000 Lowball Matt Hollinger is out in 8th place
557 2500/5000 Lowball R Hollinger is all in. Her J low holds up vs. Dale and Vinson. She triples up to around 15,000. Vinson re-enters
    Lowball Hollinger quickly wins another lowball pot when she calls an all-in bet from Ramos. Ramos re-enters.
600 4000/8000 Holdem Blinds hit 4,000 / 8,000
615 4000/8000 Holdem Postoli is out in 7th when Matthews catches a spade on the river to flush out Postoli's pair of jacks.
625 6000/12000 Holdem Potstuck in the big blind with only 2,000 in chips remaining, Sodergren reluctantly calls all-in with 2-6. A 6 comes on the turn and he nearly triples up. Rebecca Hollinger is out in 6th place. Picture is below. Matt Hollinger looks on. Sodergren is in upper right. Neither Hollinger or Matthews with their Aces can find a hand to beat Sodergrens pair of 6's.

630 6000/12000 5-Stud Sodergren is dealt AA vs. Matthew's JJ in 5-card stud to double up to 30,000
635 6000/12000 5-Stud Ramos bluffs with K5 in 5-stud (K showing). Sodergren calls with Q showing (K in the hole). Ramos catches an A to improve but Sodergren is dealt another K and Ramos is eliminated in 5th place.
637 10000/20000 5-Stud Vinson catches several unlucky low cards on the deal in 5-stud. The required bring-ins cost him a respectable chunk of his stack.
640 10000/20000 Omaha Matthews hits trip 4's to knock Vinson out in 4th place.
645 10000/20000 Omaha The "Hand of the Tournament". In a 3-way pot, Tony Matthews and Bret Dale are all in when Sodergren hits a straight (9-K) in Omaha to take down a monster pot. Dale and Matthews both re-enter, the last 2 players to do so. Picture of this decisive hand is below. Erion Postoli looks on.

655 10000/20000 Holdem Matthews is blinded out quickly. Dale comes back from one 10000 chip to pull within 2-to-1 of Sodergren's stack. On the final hand, Dale holds 4-5 suited and flops a flush AND open-ended straight draw. But when the river comes, he hit's neither and Sodergren's pair of 7's holds up. Bret Dale finishes in 2nd place and James Sodergren is declared the May Final Table Champion! Picture of the final hand is below: