The buy-ins are getting higher and the fields are getting smaller at PokerGO’s 2022 Stairway to Millions at the PokerGO studio in Las Vegas. On Tuesday, Jake Schindler won Event #6: $25,000 No-Limit Hold’em to capture the $287,500 first prize and a ticket into the next event.
The tournament garnered just 25 entries, creating a $625,000 prize pool. Only four players – Schindler, Nick Petrangelo, Alex Foxen, and Sean Winter – made the money.
Schindler was in third place when the tournament got down to the nine-handed final table and fell further as he lost big pots to Michael Lang and Petrangelo. But he made it to the final seven and started to chip back up. With five players remaining, Schindler made a big move, taking a healthy pot from Vikenty Shegal when he rivered a better pair, then eliminating Shegal by hitting a backdoor flush when Shegal had two pair.
With the money bubble having burst, play ended Monday night and Schindler went into Tuesday’s action with the chip lead. He knocked out Winter with A-K versus A-Q about an hour and a half in and then Petrangelo sent Foxen to the rail with Aces against Eights.
Schindler had a sizable lead going into heads-up play against Petrangelo, 2.215 million chips to 910,000. Schindler widened the gap and with blinds at 25,000/50,000 and a 50,000-chip ante and then came the final hand. It wasn’t all that dramatic. Both players got their chips in pre-flop and Schindler had Petrangelo dominated, A-Q against Q-J. The cards didn’t do anything for Petrangelo and it was over.
According to Schindler in his post-match interview, the last hand was pretty much indicative of the rest of the day. “I think I made one mistake with ace-ten, but other than that I think the hands were pretty straightforward,” he said. “The cards played themselves for the most part. I didn’t have too many tough decisions.”
Because of the “steps” format of the Stairway to Millions (oh, ha…steps…stairway, I get it), Schindler, Petrangelo, Winter, and Foxen all get free entries into Event #7, $50,000 (+$1,000 fee) No-Limit Hold’em. If the pattern of smaller and smaller fields holds, those four will make up a significant percentage of the total field. It is entirely possible that we could see similar-sized fields to Event #6, though, as high rollers might have been waiting for the nosebleed buy-ins.
Either way, Stairway to Millions has received excellent reviews from the players. PokerGO has already established a solid reputation for how it runs live poker tournaments and players have appreciated the ability to start at more reasonable buy-in levels.
“I live right next door and they’re great tournaments,” Schindler said. “I like all of these series. I think they help the turnouts a little bit. It’s just the best playing environment, all in all.”
PokerGO Stairway to Millions Event #5 – Final Results
- Jake Schindler – $287,500
- Nick Petrangelo – $175,000
- Alex Foxen – $100,000
- Sean Winter – $62,500
Image credit: PokerGO.com