Downstream Casino Resort-Quapaw, OK Top 30 Finishers
||Michael Payte, Jr.
Downstream Casino Resort-Quapaw, OK Recap
Duty Army Sergeant Wins $100K on HPT
Quapaw, OK – Jason Fennell
is no stranger to pressure. The active duty US Army Staff Sergeant safely
returned from four deployments in Iraq, one requiring a MedEvac. At
Downstream Casino Resort, he brought his resiliency to the felt and became the
latest champion on Heartland Poker Tour, winning $100,017.
“You’re going to take
a bad beat,” Fennell said, comparing tournament poker to military life,
“but you have to bounce back.”
The Chicago native hopes to play
poker professionally after retiring from the army. With a newly-improved
bankroll and a new favorite hand, ace-king of hearts, Fennell is well on his
“We appreciate the
opportunity to thank Fennell for his service,” said HPT President Todd
Anderson. Heartland Poker Tour works to honor veterans on an ongoing
basis through regular donations to Disabled American Veterans. In
Michigan next month, poker enthusiasts are invited to play in a celebrity
tournament to benefit DAV. Public service announcements also air in
every episode of Heartland Poker Tour.
When the Downstream episodes of
HPT air, second-place finisher Brian Kim will relive a grueling ride. At
just twenty years old, the college student took his seat at the final table
with the biggest chip lead in HPT history. With over 4 million of the 6
million chips in play, he planned to sit back and play as little as
possible. The other five players at the felt had a different plan for
Kim’s monster chip stack. Holding steady after a few big hits,
missing a flush draw on the river was the final blow. Now with $46,219 in
his pocket and final table experience, he is setting his sights on a World
Series of Poker bracelet before age 22.
Shane Carey, a college student
studying creative writing, couldn’t have scripted a wilder ride for
himself. During day two, his stack ranged from 82,000 chips to a half
million. Rallying repeatedly at the final table, Carey became the chip
leader with three players remaining. The rollercoaster ride ended for the
Columbia, Missouri man when Fennell flopped a queen for his king-queen against
“This kid is a fighter,
said HPT commentator Fred Bevill, “His amazing comebacks make for great
TV.” For Carey, $27,731 in third place makes a decent payday.
The underdog at the table,
Jackmen Hy, was hoping to be the comeback kid. With just 35,000 chips,
the Edmund, Oklahoma man needed to double up fast and often. He was on
the right track, doubling up in the first hand. Three hands later, he was
out the door with $15,406 in sixth place.
Now filming its sixth season, HPT
gives local poker enthusiasts and casual players a chance to compete for
“life-changing money” on national TV. “The opportunity
to win this kind of money on national TV is appealing for every level of
player,” says HPT President Todd Anderson. HPT is available
on TV in over 100 million US households, in addition to widespread distribution
throughout Europe and the Caribbean.
It is the love of competition
that compels Pete McBride to the game. The high school basketball coach
planned to follow the same advice at the final table that he gives his players
on the court, “Battle it out and never give up.” The battle
ended with ace-five against ace-king, although finishing fourth for $21,569 was
still a slam dunk for the Winona, Missouri family man. “It’s
a dream come true,” he said.
Warren Sharp had a dream week at
Downstream Casino Resort, where he also won a golf tournament. With just
$125 invested in the HPT, Sharp started day two as a chip leader. It was
the end of the road for the car salesman, however, when he called all in on the
flop with ace-ten versus Carey’s king-ten. Both players flopped top
pair of tens, but Carey caught a king on the river. Winning $18,488 in
fifth place, he is likely to try his luck at Downstream again soon. The
HPT will return to Downstream in early 2011.