After 13 hours of play, Day 2 of The Mid-States Poker Tour Riverside $1,100 Main Event in Riverside Iowa, the field of 96 was reduced to a single player. After a swingy heads up match, it was Wisconsin’s Lee Rzentkowski who ended up beating Miroslav Semanisin heads up for his first MSPT title and $145,006.
“I’m kind of in a daze,” the newly crowned MSPT champion said. “The money is great, but it’s all about the trophy.” Rzentkowski is no stranger to tournaments, having won three WSOPC rings in his life and career tournament earnings of $193,647 prior to this victory. “The money is here to buy me into more tournaments,” said Rzentkowski, overwhelmed with the emotions of the moment.
Rzentkowski remained a large stack throughout most of the day and it wasn’t until he was heads-up to where he fell to a short stack. He rebounded and fought back to regain the lead and win his first MSPT. When asked about his future MSPT prospects, he said “I’ll be back to play as many as I can.”
Day 2 Action
Day 2 action saw some time pass before the bubble burst. Eventually it was Colden Carlson who ended up as the unfortunate bubble boy when his pocket jacks could not improve against the pocket kings of Terry Gran (29th-$3,190).
Afterwards, many MSPT legends fell including Nicola Ditrapani (75th-$2,030), Ryan Phan (62nd-$2,320), Miles Barnum (38th-$2,683), Mark Davis (30th-$3,190), Taylor Howard (25th-$4,205), Michael Puccio (19th-$6,090), and Alex Wheeler (14th-$8,700).
Both former champions found themselves falling short of their intended goal as Dan Bekavac bowed out in 55th place for $2,320 and Craig Trost exited in 27th place for $4,205. The final table bubble saw an interesting series of events occur as Mike Estes (10th-$10,803) was eliminated when his ace-seven could not beat the ace-ten of Miroslav Senisin and one table over, Sam Hanson (9th-$13,051) could not win a race with ace-queen against the pocket fives of Josh Reichard. The final table started with eight, rather than the planned nine.
Final Table Action
The current MSPT Player of the year point leader Reichard seemed to be in a good spot to further pad his points when he got in his ace-king against Jason Crews’ ace-queen, but the flop containing both an ace and a queen which had the newly minted MSPT hall of famer exiting the tournament in eighth place for $16,676.
Asa Snyder began the final table as one of the big stacks, but he lost a massive pot early on when his pocket kings could not hold against David Kenniston’s queens. He had a second chance to double up when he got in his remaining chips with ace-jack against Anthony Sedlak’s king-jack, but a king on the flop spelled the end of his run and he ended the tournament in seventh place for $21,751.
Arturas Astrauskas ended his tournament run in sixth place for $28,276. Most of the day he stood tall as one of the larger stacks of the tournament. It all came to an end however, when he moved all in against a raise and a call of Sedlak and Jason Crews. Sedlak folded, but Crews called with ace-queen and held against Astrauskas’ king-four to take the pot and send out Astrauskas.
The next collision was with the two largest stacks at the table when Sedlak and Rzentkowski got involved in a three-bet pot. The flop came ace-high and Sedlak check jammed over Rzentkowski’s continuation-bet and Rzentkowski called. Sedlak held ace-queen but was behind the ace-king of Rzentkowski. No improvement was found for the ace-queen and Sedlak exited the tournament in fifth place for $36,977.
Following him out the door in fourth place was David Kenniston who moved all in against Rzentkowski’s three-bet with ace-ten, only to get called by Rzentkowski’s ace-queen and find no improvement. Kenniston just weeks after his deep run in Battle Creek, collected $48,505 for his efforts.
After that it was the 2021 MSPT Riverside Main Event runner up Crews who found himself all-in and at risk. He moved all in with ace-two offsuit only to get called by Semanisin’s king-jack offsuit. The flop contained a jack and Crews exited the tournament in third place for $65,253.
Heads-up began as a rather swingy affair. Rzentkowski began it with the lead, but Semanisin ended up taking over when he won a few big pots off of Rzentkowski. A key shifting point was when Rzentkowski moved all in over a 2 million chip bet from Semanisin who ended up folding two pair on a one-liner to a straight. After that, Semanisin moved all in with his short stack with ace-nine which Rzentkowski called ace-four offsuit. The board ran out to give Rzentkowski a straight and Seminisin bettered his seventh-place finish in the MSPT Riverside earlier in the year by coming in second place for $89,180.
Thank you to all who played and thank you for reading along with PokerNews. The MSPT will now head to The Venetian Las Vegas from November 1-3 for a $250,000 guarantee as well as a second event in the same location running November 3-6 for a $750,000 guarantee. This will be followed by a stop at Minnesota’s Running Aces Casino from December 1-11, and then a season-ending Main Event at Venetian from December 28-30.