WSOP 2008 Event #16, $2,000 Omaha Hi-Low Split (8 or Better) (Limit), Final Results and Report

WSOP 2008 Event #16, $2,000 Omaha Hi-Low Split (8 or Better) (Limit), Final Results and Report

Number of Entries: 551
Total Net Prize Pool: $ 1,022,820
June 8-10, 2008

Andrew Brown
Andrew Brown

Final Results

1 Andrew Brown $226,483.00 New York New York
2 Ted Forrest $143,420.00 Las Vegas Nevada
3 Jim Pechac $88,065.00 Phoenix Arizona
4 Soheil Shamseddin $71,961.00 Houston Texas
5 Kia Hooshmand $58,877.00 Jersey City New Jersey
6 Ralph Perry $46,297.00 Las Vegas Nevada
7 Scott Clements $36,232.00 Mt. Vernon Washington
8 Allan Enciso $28,684.00 Los Angeles California
9 James Fricke $21,135.00 Mahomet Illinois
10 Lee Grove $13,587.00 Superior Nebraska
11 Ralph Rudd $13,587.00 Downey California
12 Mallory Smith $13,587.00 Centennial Colorado
13 Jose Paz $11,071.00 Santa Cruz Bolivia
14 Joe Aronesty $11,071.00 Miami Beach Florida
15 James Richburg $11,071.00 Long Beach California
16 Michael Sohayegh $8,554.00 New York New York
17 Patrick Poels $8,554.00 Mesa Arizona
18 Michael Reed $8,554.00 Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
19 Shirley Rosario $6,541.00 Downey California
20 William Sheppard $6,541.00 Riverside California
21 Robert Oxenberg $6,541.00 Aspen Colorado
22 Cameron McKinley $6,541.00 Vancouver Washington
23 Kevin Petersen $6,541.00 Plano Texas
24 Joshua Arieh $6,541.00 Atlanta Georgia
25 Ryan Carey $6,541.00 Las Vegas Nevada
26 Dave Stann $6,541.00 Hollywood California
27 Hilbert Shirey $6,541.00 Winter Haven Florida
28 Kristy Gazes $5,535.00 Van Nuys California
29 Johnson Juanda $5,535.00 Las Vegas Nevada
30 Kenneth Nay $5,535.00 Boulder Colorado
31 John Cernuto $5,535.00 Las Vegas Nevada
32 Thang Nguyen $5,535.00 Schenefeld Germany
33 Soo Lee $5,535.00 Las Vegas Nevada
34 Wing Wong $5,535.00 Rowland Heights California
35 Lamar Johnston $5,535.00 Cocoa Beach Florida
36 Bradley Libson $5,535.00 Annapolis Maryland
37 Kham-ar Aythavone $4,529.00 West Wendover Nevada
38 Thomas Hufnagle $4,529.00 Las Vegas Nevada
39 Max Stern $4,529.00 Las Vegas Nevada
40 Brent Carter $4,529.00 Oak Park Ilinois
41 Ralph Gable $4,529.00 Cedar Rapids Ct. Iowa
42 Brian Sharrock $4,529.00 Myrtle Beach South Carolina
43 John Guth $4,529.00 Vancouver Washington
44 Henry Kim $4,529.00 Chicago Ilinois
45 James Vanalstyne $4,529.00 Las Vegas Nevada
46 Chris Birchby $4,025.00 Hollywood California
47 Jay Heimowitz $4,025.00 Bethel New York
48 Kyle Landrum $4,025.00 Lakewood Colorado
49 Jason Loehde $4,025.00 Costa Mesa California
50 David Fernandez $4,025.00 Richmond Kentucky
51 Gary Turner $4,025.00 Las Vegas Nevada
52 James Bord $4,025.00 Stanmore United Kingdom
53 David Chiu $4,025.00 Rowland Heights California
54 Massimiliano Pescatori $4,025.00 Las Vegas Nevada


Tournament Notes

The $2,000 buy-in Omaha High-Low Split championship attracted a competitive field of 551 players. The total prize pool amounted to $1,022,820. The top 54 finishers collected prize money.

This was the second of three Omaha High-Low Split tournaments on the 2008 WSOP schedule. The $10,000 buy-in Omaha High-Low Split World Championship will be played June 19th through 21st.

Last year’s event attracted 534 entries. Hence the turnout this year represents a 3 percent increase over 2007 attendance.

The tournament was played over three consecutive days. Both the first and second days lasted approximately 12 hours. On Day Three, the final table was dealt out on the final table adjacent to the ESPN main stage, which was featuring the conclusion of the Ladies Poker World Championship (Event #15). The Event #17 finale was also being played at a table nearby. This is expected to be the only day at this year’s WSOP which will feature three simultaneous final tables.

The winner was Andrew Brown, a 26-year-old professional poker player from New York, NY. Brown was a student at New York University prior to taking up poker for a living. Brown has no aspirations of being on television or being famous. He very much considers poker as a craft.

Brown plays mostly in New York’s underground games, as well as in along the East Coast. He also plays poker on his computer. He admits to losing money at poker initially, but refined his skills through study and hard work and improved to the point where he is now making a living at the game.

While in college, Brown studied hotel management. He eventually wants to return to school and finish his degree. But he also says he is making very good money at the poker table and finds it difficult to break away from the independent lifestyle the game affords to successful players.

“I think I am a better heads-up player than full-table player,” Brown said afterward. That point was proven by his upset of five-time WSOP gold bracelet winner Ted Forrest, who came in second. Brown battled Forrest back and forth for two hours before prevailing late in the night.

Brown stated that he thinks the best three poker players in the world are: Barry Greenstein, Phil Ivey, and Ted Forrest.

“I was looking forward to playing Ted Forrest heads-up,” Brown said afterward. “He’s amazing. We had a see-saw battle. It was a great heads-up match.”

Brown collected $225,632 for first place. He also earned his first WSOP gold bracelet.

On this day, three New Yorkers won WSOP gold bracelets. Events #15, #16, and #17 all concluded with two New York City winners and one from the suburbs. This is the first time in WSOP history that three winners in a single day all came from the same hometown.

The most amazing story of this tournament involved the third-place finisher – Jim Pechac. According to, the Phoenix poker pro was down to just a single 1,000 chip when the last hand of Day Two was dealt. Figuring he had absolutely no shot in the tournament, he tossed it into the pot and managed to double up on the hand. Pechac returned to an 18-handed tournament on Day Three. He needed to double up about four times just to reach 17th place. Incredibly, Pechac went on a memorable roll and ended up busting out 11 hours later, in third place. Sometimes, “chip and a chair” stories seem over melodramatic. But on this occasion it came true. Pechac’s patience paid off in the amount of $88,065.

Scott Clements became the first player at this year’s WSOP to make two final table appearances. He finished sixth. The two-time WSOP gold bracelet winner now has made four final tables in two years.

This tournament ran much longer than usual. After 10 levels were played on Day One (12 hours), the tournament played down to 18 players on Day Two, when play was suspended at 3 am. On Day Three, play began at 2 pm and ended at 3 am – after about 13 hours.

There were several notable in-the money finishers. No less than 15 of the top 54 money winners were former gold bracelet winners, with the majority holding more than one former WSOP title.

John Juanda has more WSOP cashes than any other player since 1999. In fact, all of his 42 career in-the-money finishes have been within the past ten years. He cashed out 29th in this event.

Six-time gold bracelet winner Jay Heimowitz cashed in 47th place. It was good to see Heimowitz’s name back in the ranks of the money finishers. His first WSOP cash was way back in 1975.

Miami John” Cernuto cashed for the second time at this year’s WSOP. He now has 44 career in-the-money finishes, which places him tenth on the all-time list.

Other former gold bracelet winners who cashed in this event included Max Pescatori, David Chiu, Tommy Hufnagle, Dr. Max Stern, Brent Carter, Ralph Perry, Josh Arieh, Hilbert Shirey, James Richburg, and Pat Poels.

Sports broadcaster Mike Patrick entered this event, but did not cash.

2007 champion Frank O’Dell played in this tournament, but did not cash. This marks the 16th straight event where a defending champion failed to cash in his or her respective event.

Through 16 events, the “Professionals versus Amateurs” WSOP gold medal scoreboard currently reads – Pros (12) and Amateurs (4).