2006 World Series of Poker
Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino – Las Vegas
Casino Employees World Championship
Number of Entries: 1,232
Total Prize Money: $554,850
Official Results (Final Table):
1st Place Chris Gros Henderson, NV $127,616
2nd Place Bryan Devonshire Burnsville, MN 66,582
3rd Place R.J. Wright Las Vegas, NV 38,531
4th Place Scott Clark Las Vegas, NV 27,720
5th Place Christopher Himmenger Las Vegas, NV 22,176
6th Place Craig Federspiel Las Vegas, NV 19,404
7th Place David Wortham Hemet, CA 16,632
8th Place Marsha Waggoner Downey, CA 13,860
9th Place Barry Goldberg Las Vegas, NV 12,474
10th Place Alejandro Posso Sunrise, FL 11,088
Chris Gros Wins First Event
at the 2006 World Series of Poker!
Casino Employees World Poker Championship
Shatters All-Time Attendance Record – with 1,232 Entries
Las Vegas, NV -- On most days and nights, players in the “Casino Employees World Poker Championship” can be found providing customer service to the guests of their respective casino and hotel properties. On this day however, the concept of hospitality was the farthest thing from any of their minds.
As well it should have been.
The all-time record field of 1.232 participants competed for a total prize pool of $554,850 in the traditional kick-off to the six-week long World Series of Poker Tournament held at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino. The tournament paid out the top 101 finishers as follows:
The ten players at the final table displayed an array of individuals vying for the $127,616 first prize and coveted WSOP championship gold bracelet. The lone female finalist, Marsha Waggoner was unwavering when asked how she felt as the only woman at the table. “This is where I belong,” she replied with a confident grin.
10th Place Finisher -- Alejandro Posso.
After a spell of little action in the early rounds, Alejandro Posso moved all-in with pocket kings. For Posso, opportunity quickly turned into a devastating instance of bad timing as Christopher Himmenger called and showed pocket aces. The flop of 3h 3c 8h did nothing for Posso, representing The Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood, Florida. The turn showed the 4d, while a Qs on the river sealed the Columbian-born poker dealer’s 10th place finish.
9th Place Finisher -- Barry Goldberg
A little more than an hour later, Barry Goldberg moved all in with Ac-Jd and R.J. Wright quickly called. Wright’s dominating Ad-Qc ended Goldberg’s bid as the flop showed 9s, 10s, 3d followed by a benign 5d at the turn and a 10d on the river.
8th Place Finisher -- Marsha Waggoner
The Brisbane, Australia native took home $13,860 after finishing in 8th place. An executive host for Hollywood Park in Inglewood, California, Waggoner beat out 1,227 other competitors before being eliminated.
7th Place Finisher -- David Wortham
Originally from Atlanta, GA, Wortham played a tight game at the final table, doubling-up when the opportunity presented itself. However, what seemed to be an opportunity turned into a bust as his pocket Queens were trumped by Bryan Devonshire’s pocket Aces. Luck was not a lady that night as Devonshire’s rockets held-up against Wortham.
6th Place Finisher -- Craig Federspiel
Moving all-in with pocket Jacks, Federspiel was called by Chris Gros who turned over what else? Pocket Aces. The Mirage Las Vegas dealer originally from Louisville, KY who holds a Bachelor’s Degree from UNC Chapel Hill was eliminated as Gros’s aces held up.
5th Place Finisher-Chris Himmenger
With the blinds increased to $4,000-$8,000, Chris Himmenger moved all-in for $49,000 and R.J. Wright obliged. Himmenger, a waiter at Binion’s Casino in Las Vegas turned over As-6h. Wright showed 10s-9s. The flop came 2c - 7c - 7s. An 8h at the turn gave Wright an open-ended straight draw while the Jh on the river completed the straight and busted Himmenger.
4th Place Finisher -- Scott Clark
After watching his colossal chip-count slowly diminish, Clark, a 25-year old dealer at the Rio Las Vegas pushed his remaining stack into the pot. Once again, R.J. Wright sensed opportunity and called. Clark, or “Scooter” as his friends and family affectionately call him, showed pocket fives. Wright turns over Ad-3s. It was bad news for Clark as the flop showed Ac, 4s, 9c. Wright eliminated his third opponent at the final table as the turn came with an 8s and the river showed Qc.
3rd place Finisher -- R.J. Wright
Only a couple of hands later, the “eliminator” became the “eliminated” when Wright went all-in after a flop of 6d, 2d, 2h, re-raising Chris Gros’s 200K bet. Gros called and showed Ks-Qs. Wright, a New Jersey native and dealer at the Luxor in Las Vegas, turned over the better hand, As-5d. The turn brought the 3h. A Kc on the river prompted a loud eruption from spectators as Wright was eliminated.
Heads-Up Action -- Chris Gros vs. Bryan Devonshire
After a number of alternating re-raises and folds between the two finalists, Gros, a dealer at Caesar’s Palace called 24-year-old Devonshire’s 30K pre-flop re-raise. After a flop of 3s, 3d, 8h, Devonshire, a semi-professional poker player from Burnsville, MN bet $45,000. Gros re-raised to 100K and Devonshire moved all-in. Chris Gros, a St. Louis native who holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology called and revealed that he caught trip 3’s with 4h,-3c in his hand. Devonshire turned over Ac-Kc. A 10h at the turn and a 7s on the river made Gros the champion of the opening 2006 World Series of Poker event.
“Oh my God,” replied Gros when asked how it felt to be a WSOP bracelet winner. “I don’t know what’s more exiting, not having to make another mortgage payment or winning the bracelet. It is something that I will always have.”
by Alan Fowler (WSOP Staff)
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