Missouri-Ameristar Casino Hotel Kansas City Recap
Crossley Leads from Start to Finish in KC
Ameristar Kansas City Prize Pool Tops $600K
Kansas City, KS (May 5, 2014) -- The final chapter has been written for the first Heartland Poker Tour stop at Ameristar Casino Hotel Kansas City. In the end it was Quentin Crossleyof Springfield, Missouri who came out on top, earning the HPT title and $143,143 in cash. He outlasted an impressive field of 423 entrants, including many notable players who turned out for HPT’s long-awaited Kansas City debut.
Crossley, a lawn care business owner, came into the day as the chip leader and successfully used the lead to his advantage. The champ and runner-up Stewart Yancik, a pro player from Blue Springs, Missouri, were responsible for most eliminations before getting heads up. Crossley’s pocket eights forced the final elimination sending Yancik home with $88,322.
Kansas City-area players lobbied HPT for a stop on their home turf for years. The tour’s continued success at River City Casino & Hotel in St Louis opened the door for an additional Missouri venue. The tournament did not disappoint. “We had good dealers and staff,” said Yancik, “It’s a good place to play poker.” Players from all over the U.S. converged at Ameristar Casino Hotel Kansas City, including Greg “Fossilman” Raymer, Craig Casino, and Kevin “Kevmath” Mathers. Notable pros Blair Hinkle, Sam Grizzle, and Trevor Renner all cashed in the event.
Lynn Karnes represented Kansas City at the taping of the nationally-televised Final Table. The local woman was able to parlay a $375 investment into a ninth-place finish worth $13,401. “It was a great experience to play here in the Heartland of America against some top-notch players,” said Karnes. “It gave people like me the chance to play real live competitive poker.” Her TV appearance will air nationwide later this year in episodes of Heartland Poker Tour. The syndicated poker show is available in 115 million U.S. households in addition to widespread distribution throughout Europe, the Middle East, Asia, North Africa and the Caribbean.
Curtis Edens made his TV debut with his father in the live audience. The mechanic from Tulsa, Oklahoma found himself holding ace-three with an ace on the board. He quickly found that his pair was no good when Yancik revealed ace-ten. Edens was sent to the rail in third place for $57,866. He plans to use his prize to pay for his son’s college education.
St Petersburg, Florida resident Evan Panesis has big plans for the money he won. The poker player and Dachshund breeder plans to use his winnings to create a professional dog racing league. Panesis will have $16,446 to put toward the cause after his eighth-place exit.
One of the most dramatic hands of the day led to the sixth- and seventh-place eliminations. Three players holding pairs were all-in pre-flop. Ken Rosheisen of Janesville, Wisconsin needed the most help with tens against Peter Kihonge’s jacks and Tony Repp’s aces. An ace on the flop was a welcome sight for Repp of Topeka, Kansas. Kihonge, an IT consultant in Overland Park, Kansas, was sent out in seventh place for $20,040; Rosheisen took home $23,147 for sixth. Repp didn’t get to keep the chips for long. He was eliminated in fourth place for $40,202.
The feel-good story of the event belonged to Rosheisen. The retiree/road warrior is an HPT regular, following the tour around the country for years with his wife, Karen. The event in Kansas City was his first solo mission after losing Karen to a short battle with cancer a couple of months ago. The camaraderie of fellow players helped him get back in the saddle and ride all the way to the Final Table. “I miss her a lot. She’s with me in spirit and that’s what makes this special,” Rosheisen said. He plans to donate part of his earnings to cancer research in her name. The sixth-place finish pushes his total career earnings with HPT to over $126,000.
Jason Brin of De Soto, Kansas, also has an impressive HPT resume. He played under the lights and in front of the cameras for the third time Monday. “I’ve been actively hunting an HPT Championship for years,” he said, “It would be the biggest accomplishment of my poker career.” The title remains elusive as he collected $29,847 in fifth place. His next chance at HPT glory is already underway at The Commerce Casino in the Los Angeles area. The 3-week series concludes with a nationally-televised Main Event the weekend of May 15th. Information about upcoming stops is available at HPTpoker.com.