What began for me as an evening that I thought would be enjoyable, turned into an evening that became more memorable than any poker experience that I can remember. The All In Charity Poker Tournament contained only 36 entries, but the experience gained (and confidence from Traci) was unforgettable.
I'll tell of Traci's amazing run after I tell of my loathing. I played crumby. After a couple of days of catching really good cards and making deep runs into the tournaments that I was playing in, I didn't go too far in this one. Out in 22nd place out of 36 was far worse than I wanted. I didn't make a single hand tonight, and only took down a couple of pots by forcing others to fold. A few all in's went uncalled, until the last one. With the blinds at 200-400, and a chip stack of just over 3000, I raised 1600 from the button with Qs-Js (a top ten hand). I was called by the small blind (who only held 800), and then called by the big blind. The flop came out A-9-6 (two diamonds). The big blind checked, and I checked behind him. The turn was a J, and the big blind bet 1000. I raised all in. The guy looked at his stack and had me covered, and I was toast. He flipped over A-K os, and I was done. I can't remember what the river was, but it didn't help. I watched Traci play for a while as this was the hand that broke the 4 tables to 3. Then, a cash game opened.
Tim and I sat down to play the cash game, a $20 buy in, winner taking half the pot, and the remaining half to the charity. Down to 4 handed action, and in the big blind, I raised all in with A-Q. I was called by the large stack with 8-7. He hit two pair on the river and I was gone in third (as the fourth place person was all in on the same hand with a very short stack). Tim went heads up and it lasted 3 hands. On the third hand, they both saw the flop. Tim flopped middle pair and moved to an immediate call from the other guy who'd flopped two pair. It was over from there.
But to the big story, Traci out lasted me by a long shot. Her table was finally broken up when Tim's and my table finished playing, and she had made the final table, very short stacked.
9 handed, and in the big blind, she was able to survive the first three eliminations from the table. Then, 6 handed made an all in move from under the gun. It was called by both the small and big blinds. The flop of Q-J-10 could not have been better for her big slick, and she tripled up to 7500. Then on the next hand (from the big blind), another all in, this time with J-10, and her second consecutive straight doubled her again.
Two hands later, she called the big blind (4000-2000 blinds) only to be called by three others. 4 handed, the board came out A-K-8. Everyone checked around. After a 6 hit the turn Traci checked, followed by another check, followed by a bet of 10k. The last person to act folded, and Traci called. The last guy folded and the 10k bet turned over A-6, two pair. The Q on the river improved Traci's KQ to two pair as well, but not as good, and she was eliminated in 6th place.
The tournament was over in about 20 more minutes, and the parties began to select their prizes in the order that they'd been eliminated. With the sixth pick, Traci chose the Flying Lessons from Santa Monica Airport as her prize. Way cool. It was an amazing prize for an amazing night, and some amazing play.
Traci played brilliantly and represented herself and pablosplace very well. She was consistent, albeit not overpowering, but consistent in her play all night, and it played right into the final table. Had a couple of hands gone her way, who knows how much better she could've done. But it was a great event.
Looking forward to publishing the pics on my myspace page (myspace.com/paulspage9578 ). Should be up in another day or so. Congrats to Traci. Cheers, P