Potawatomi Casino: July 15 - 23, 2017

 

Potawatomi Hotel & Casino - Milwaukee, WI

July 20-23, 2017

$350 Regional: 1,658 Entrants (421 on Day 1a; 524 Day 1b; and 713 Day 1c)

Local Attorney and Recreational Player Matthew Vignali Wins Largest Tournament in Wisconsin State History for $70,240

The MSPT’s latest $350 Regional Event at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino in downtown Milwaukee turned out to be a record-setting affair. A monster 1,658 entrants (421 on Day 1A, 524 1B, and 713 1C) made it the largest poker tournament ever held in Wisconsin.

The previous record was 1,272 entries set by the World Series of Poker Circuit at Potawatomi back in February, though they set it with four flights as opposed to three. The distinction of winning the largest poker tournament in Wisconsin history goes to 47-year-old local attorney and recreational poker player Matthew Vignali, who struck a heads-up deal and instead of taking home the original $80,648 prize, earned $70,240 for his performance.

“I’m pretty exhausted but very excited,” said Vignali, whose prior best cash was just $1,299. “I play recreationally, I don’t travel the circuit or anything. I just play locally, and I always play in the MSPT and WSOP Circuit when they come to Milwaukee. I’m just a recreational player.”

Vignali, who fired two bullets into the tournament, is married with three kids. He said the money came at the perfect time as he just received his son’s Marquette University tuition bill.

He started Day 2 with 85,000 and managed to double up on the fourth hand. That helped him make a deep run, but late in the evening he lost two coin flips and was on the verge of elimination. That is when lady luck smiled upon him.

“A couple of times, with the blinds at 60K/120K, I was down to 300K,” he explained. “Then I tripled up with king-queen against aces and another hand.”

On Day 2, 294 players returned to action, but with only 171 getting paid more than a hundred of them left empty handed. They included Mike Kamenjarin, Day 1A chip leader Bryan Skreens, and reigning MSPT Wisconsin State Poker champ Andy Rubinberg.

Once the money bubble burst, the in-the-money finishes came quick and included former MSPT champ Ken Pates (164th - $626), MSPT Grand Falls Regional runner-up Jason Bender (102nd - $819), Day 1C chip leader Michael Castro (40th - $1,493), 2016 Minnesota Poker Player of the Year Saad Ghanem (37th - $1,493), and final table bubble boy Bob Van Syckle (11th - $6,259).

The final table began with Michael Berry holding an eight-figure stack of 10.5 million while his next closest competitor, Vignali, had less than half that. Still, the attorney was not deterred.

“When I got to the final table I felt pretty relaxed and pretty good,” said Vignali. “Things had been swinging my way and I felt like I’d been playing real good all tournament, not making many mistakes. I felt pretty confident actually.”

The short-stacked David Papais fell in the first hand of the final table, and before long he was joined on the rail by Jeff Olson, Ken Garbowicz, and Miroslav Semanisin.

It took a while for the next elimination to occur, but it happened when Joan Sandoval, the last woman remaining in the field, got her stack of 3.4 million all in on a 4♦K♣6♠ flop holding the K♥J♠. Unfortunately for her, Day 1B chip leader Alexander Hill held the A♥A♦ and neither the 8♥ turn nor Q♠ river helped her. Sandoval earned $16,370 in her first-ever MSPT cash.

Not long after, both Berry and Michael Filippo hit the rail, which set up a heads-up match between Vignali and Hill with the former holding 27 million to the latter’s 6 million. It didn’t take long for Hill to get it in with the 6♣4♣ and Vignali called with the J♥8♥. Hill ended up making two pair to double, and from there he inched back towards even stacks.

That is when the two agreed to a deal that saw them each lock up $60,000 and leave $10,240 on the table to play for. It’s worth noting that chops are allowed in MSPT Regional Events, but not in Main Events.

In the first post-deal hand, Vignali jammed the button and Hill called off, a decision he immediately regretted.

Vignali: A♦9♥
Hill: K♦9♦

Vignali was way out in front, and he took a hammerlock on the hand after the 10♣A♠8♣ flop paired his ace. The 8♠ turn left Hill drawing dead, and he finished runner-up after the J♣ was run out on the river.

The MSPT will return to Potawatomi Casino one final time in Season 8. From November 11-19, the state’s premiere gaming venue will play host to the 2017 MSPT Wisconsin State Poker Championship, an $1,100 buy-in Main Event featuring a $200,000 guaranteed prize pool.

Results

Rank Player Name AmountPoints
1 Matthew Vignali $70,240633
2 Alexander Hill $60,000567
3 Michael Filippo $37,555533
4 Michael Berry $28,407500
5 Alex Crawford $21,667467
6 Joan Sandoval $16,370433
7 Miroslav Semanisin $13,000400
8 Ken Garbowicz $10,108367
9 Jeffrey Olson $8,185333
10 David Papais $6,259300
11 Bob Van Syckle $6,259300
12 Daniel Dombrowski $6,259300
13 Stephan Johnson $5,296267
14 Brian Birkel $5,296267
15 Katie Day $5,296267
16 John Ruggles $4,430233
17 Michael Wolff (WI) $4,430233
18 Srinivasan Parthasarathy $4,430233
19 Huiling Wu $3,707200
20 Max Demicco $3,707200
21 Michael Hariu $3,707200
22 Tommy Vo $3,130200
23 Amit Rupani $3,130200
24 Dheeraj Narediia $3,130200
25 Trevor Redlarczyk $2,648200
26 Robert Cussen $2,648200
27 Michael Schlegel $2,648200
28 Ronald Grahn $1,926167
29 Thomas Polhill $1,926167
30 Peter Schmall $1,926167
31 Lee Rzentkowski $1,926167
32 James Ruszkiewicz $1,926167
33 Robert Brunette $1,926167
34 Sam Gorelik $1,926167
35 Brian Thomas $1,926167
36 Christina Renz $1,926167
37 Saad Ghanem $1,493133
38 Brian Majcher $1,493133
39 Mike Bennett (WI) $1,493133
40 Michael Castro $1,493133
41 Ryan Svoboda $1,493133
42 Brandon Samuels $1,493133
43 Brad Sailor $1,493133
44 Robert Esperes $1,493133
45 Josh Greil $1,493133
46 Kelly Modad Sr $1,348100
47 Derek Gardner $1,348100
48 Marcus Suelflow $1,348100
49 Jon Ferraro $1,348100
50 Paul Limkemann $1,348100
51 Tim Goronja $1,348100
52 Alan Murphy $1,348100
53 Gustav Hollo $1,348100
54 Terrence Murphy $1,348100
55 Drew Schulz $1,20467
56 John Simon $1,20467
57 David Wittenberg $1,20467
58 Brett Halan $1,20467
59 Matthew Oberst $1,20467
60 Zach Rice $1,20467
61 Carl Felten $1,20467
62 Travis House $1,20467
63 Brett Kunin $1,20467
64 Altanulzii Onom $1,05933
65 Ed Blaine $1,05933
66 Jeff Schwartz $1,05933
67 Kurt Sheckler $1,05933
68 Barry Schwartze $1,05933
69 Daniel Schober $1,05933
70 Eric Szempinski $1,05933
71 Michael Rhode $1,05933
72 Matthew Ruder $1,05933
73 Mark Collins $1,01117
74 Tom Larson $1,01117
75 Robert Egidi $1,01117
76 Ryan Hedrich $1,01117
77 Nicola Ditrapani $1,01117
78 Philip Cali $1,01117
79 Anthony Dejesus $1,01117
80 Konstantin Mikhailov $1,01117
81 Marcus Knox $1,01117
82 Yoon Kim $96317
83 Daniel Muccio $96317
84 Daniel Youn $96317
85 Ben Sagan $96317
86 Ken Ulickey $96317
87 Michael Wald $96317
88 Erik Hagerman $96317
89 Mike Goldberg $96317
90 Bernie Thomason $96317
91 Juan Medina $86717
92 Norman Wayer $86717
93 Randolph Stone $86717
94 James Smith $86717
95 Mohsen Salha $86717
96 Jeffrey Brook $86717
97 Robert Richmond $86717
98 Robert Steinbrenner $86717
99 Stephen Swiss $86717
100 Rich Steiniger $81917
101 Ryan Colwin $81917
102 Jason Bender $81917
103 Kyle Cruse $81917
104 Philip Rudolph $81917
105 Shivprasad Nomula $81917
106 Benjamin Muffie $81917
107 Paul Zizis $81917
108 John Gravagna $81917
109 John Morstad $77017
110 Michael Roenneburg $77017
111 Benjamin Stroemer $77017
112 Jose Cervantes $77017
113 Robert Jansen $77017
114 Daniel Cruz $77017
115 Brett Reichard $77017
116 Sami Shurbaji $77017
117 Nikolas Stone $77017
118 Nathan Wack $72217
119 Fran Prestay $72217
120 William Schaeffer $72217
121 Dustin Engel $72217
122 Timothy Klepps $72217
123 Tou Her $72217
124 Bobby Nagel $72217
125 Thomas Murphy $72217
126 James Battaglia $72217
127 Nicola Nardulli $72217
128 Jason Petrie $72217
129 Caleb Swenson $72217
130 Martin Halm $72217
131 David Kenniston $72217
132 Jason Trezak $72217
133 Tim Thomas $72217
134 Charles Casavant $72217
135 Brad Siegel $72217
136 Victor Somoza $67417
137 Darnell Sheegog $67417
138 Chris Schrader $67417
139 Chris Christy $67417
140 Jason Berry $67417
141 David Nelson $67417
142 Edward Veith $67417
143 Dante Wallace $67417
144 Raymond Lantz $67417
145 Joe Niklasch $67417
146 Hal Marcus $67417
147 Joseph Torregrossa $67417
148 Timothy Brown $67417
149 John Shannon $67417
150 Stephen Lark $67417
151 Brady Borgardt $67417
152 Stephen Curty $67417
153 Tom Sladek $67417
154 James Prodzinski $62617
155 James Kilarjian $62617
156 John Harth $62617
157 Travian Franklin $62617
158 Daniel McGown $62617
159 Thomas Harrington $62617
160 Winston Ackerman $62617
161 Louie Brazzoni $62617
162 Tin Quach $62617
163 Kathalyn Holz Zammuto $62617
164 Kentraylus Pates $62617
165 Derek Palmer $62617
166 Trevor Olson $62617
167 Rick Seavert $62617
168 Paul Choi $62617
169 Umesh Babusukumar $62617
170 Steve Alonzo $62617
171 Charles Melcher $62617

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