Jake Bazeley won his first ever World Series of Poker Circuit main event title in 2014 at the Harrah’s Cherokee, outlasting a field of 797 entries. Four years later the poker pro from Cincinnati, Ohio returned to the same venue and managed to capture the same main event title for a second time. Bazeley overcame a field of 1,127 entries to take down the 2018 WSOP Circuit Harrah’s Cherokee $1,700 main event, earning his second WSOPC gold ring and the top prize of $311,616.
“That last time was my first huge win,” Bazeley told WSOP reporters after coming out on top. “I was comfortable today, coming in… I’ve been here before.”
This was the fifth largest score of Bazeley’s career, and it brought his lifetime live tournament earnings to $4,385,362.
Bazeley entered the final day of this tournament in 11th chip position with 15 players remaining. WSOP bracelet winner Kyle Cartwright started the day as the chip leader. He grew his stack even further by eliminating Trey Walton (15th – $20,301), Allen Kessler (12th – $24,911) and Nghia Le (11th – 24,911). With that he set the unofficial final table of ten, entering as the only player with over 100 big blinds in his stack.
Cartwright was far from done with his elimination spree, sending Michael Kaczmarek (10th – $24,911) and David Shaw (9th – $30,904) to the rail to grow his stack even further. At this point, Bazeley was among the shorter stacks. He found a key double up in a cooler situation. With a board of QSpade Suit7Diamond Suit5Diamond Suit, Ian Holt moved all-in holding the 7Heart Suit7Club Suitfor middle set. Bazeley called for less and revealed the QHeart SuitQDiamond Suit for top set. Holt didn’t hit his one out and Bazeley doubled up.
Bazeley and Cartwright took turns eliminating James Striker (8th – $38,775) and Kenneth Baime (7th – $49,190) to continue their takeover of the final table. Bazeley scored another knockout, picking up AClub SuitKClub Suit against Virgil Beddingfield’s ASpade SuitJDiamond Suit and getting all-in preflop. His hand held up and Beddingfield was sent home in sixth place ($63,106).
Mai Chaitib was the next player to hit the rail, running 9Heart Suit8Heart Suit into the pocket queens of Toby Boas preflop and failing to come from behind. She earned $81,904 as the fifth-place finisher.
Ian Holt managed to hand around for several payjumps after losing the set-over-set hand, but eventually was knocked out in fourth place ($107,567) by Bazeley, who went on to bust Toby Boas in third place ($143,012) not long after to take a sizable chip lead into the final showdown with Cartwright.
Cartwright did his best to fight back into the heads-up match, but in the end it came down to a preflop coin flip. Cartwright got all-in with the AClub SuitQHeart Suit up against Bazeley’s 10Spade Suit10Heart Suit. The board came down 10Club Suit7Club Suit2Heart SuitJHeart Suit4Diamond Suit and Bazeley flopped a set of tens to secure the pot and the title. Cartwright took home $192,459 as the runner-up finisher.
In addition to the top prize of $311,616 and his second gold ring, Bazeley was also awarded 960 Card Player Player of the Year points as the champion of this event. This was his third POY-qualified final table of the year, and it was enough to see him move into 238th place in the overall standings.
Here is a look at the payouts and POY points awarded at the final table:
|Place||Player||Earnings (USD)||POY Points|