German poker players have had so much success on the international poker circuit the past three to four years that it’s really no surprise when another German star emerges to take down a major title. That’s exactly what happened Friday night in San Jose as Stefan Schillhabel came out on top of the World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star event to win $1,298,000.
Schillhabel started the final table with the chip lead, but watched as Adam Geyer was the most active player early, picking up three eliminations in the first two hours of play.
Maria Ho entered the final table third in chips with a shot at becoming the first female player to win an open WPT event. Ho lost a significant pot early on to Adam Geyer only to have her tournament come to an end an hour later.
After Geyer opened to 175,000 from the cutoff and Schillhabel re-raised to 460,000 from the button, Ho, the last remaining Shooting Star left in the field, cold four-bet all in for 1,735,000. Geyer tank-called and Schillhabel folded. Geyer was in control with against Ho’s . The board ran out to send Ho out in sixth.
After losing over 2,600,000 in a hand with Bryan Piccioli, Season XIII Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown champ Griffin Paul was left short-stacked and in need of an opportunity to double-up. Paul moved all in from UTG for 610,000, Geyer called from the button, but Andjelko Andrejevic announced he was all in for 1,130,000. Geyer called and turned over and found himself way behind Andrejevic’s and Griffin’s . The flop changed everything though and gave Geyer top two pair with two cards to come. The turn and river were blanks for Andrejevic and Griffin and both players were eliminated, Griffin in fifth place and Andrejevic in fourth.
Having been responsible for the first three eliminations, Geyer was in full control with just three players remaining and over 50% of the chips in play. Things got close to even, though, after Schillhabel clashed with Piccioli. From the button, Geyer opened to 240,000. Schillhabel made it 73,000 from the small blind before Piccioli moved all in from the big blind. Geyer folded, but Schillhabel called and got great news when he found out his had Piccioli’s dominated. Neither player connected on the run out and Piccioli was eliminated in third place.
That hand moved Schillhabel to within 350,000 of Geyer, but as heads-up play began, both players had more than 90 big blinds. Heads-up play took nearly three hours and 54 hands. Schillhabel took down a 6,750,000 chip pot early on to take a nearly 2-1 chip lead, but Geyer battled back to take even and took a small chip lead himself.
Schillhabel then took down a 9,000,000 chip pot without showdown to put himself clearly ahead of Geyer for the final time.
On the 102nd hand of play, Geyer, left with just 1,850,000, moved all-in and Schillhabel called. Geyer showed and Schillhabel needed help with . The flop moved Geyer even further ahead with top pair, but the turn and river gave Schillhabel running trips to eliminate Geyer and take down the title.
Along with $1,283,000 in prize money, Schillhabel also earned a $15,000 seat into the WPT Tournament of Champions next month at Seminole Casino in Hollywood, Florida. The WPT now heads north to Sacramento for the WPT Rolling Thunder at Thunder Valley Casino with the Main Event beginning Saturday.
Final Table Payouts
- Stefan Schillhabel – $1,298,000
- Adam Geyer – $752,800
- Bryan Piccioli – $493,350
- Andjelko Andrejevic – $331,500
- Griffin Paul – $231,310
- Maria Ho – $179,930