Season XI Champion Andy Hwang Leads Borgata WPO After Day 1A

Andy Hwang won the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open in 2013, and he's off to another good start after bagging the chiplead on Day 1A.

Andy Hwang won the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open in 2013, and he’s off to another good start after bagging the chiplead on Day 1A.

Two years ago, Andy Hwang enjoyed the run of a lifetime in the Borgata Winter Poker Open and put up the biggest result of his career – a WPT title and $730,053. There’s an eternity left to be played in the 2015 version of the Winter Poker Open, but for at least one day Hwang was able to capture some of that same magic.

With the threat of a blizzard in the Northeast looming in the days to come, Hwang put up the number to beat Sunday as he bagged the Day 1A chiplead. His 251,300 place him comfortably ahead of the rest of the Day 1A survivors, though Dan Wach and Jason Helder had strong days of their own to end with over 200,000 apiece.

Eric Panayiotou, who final tabled a WPT event back in Season VI, and Brian Haveson – who has two runner-up finishes at the WSOP and a WPT final table to his credit – both ended Day 1A with strong stacks of their own. Matt Affleck, Jake Schwartz, Andy Frankenberger and Eric Blair also ended the night north of 100,000.

Keven Stammen, who won the WPT World Championship here at Borgata back in April, could not bag up chips on Day 1A – nor could back-to-back WPT champion Darren Elias. They were joined by a wide range of other bustouts among the 360 entries put into play in the first of two starting sessions.

Any of those players can take another shot – or more than one, if things go awry – on Day 1B. The option to register or re-enter runs through the first six 75 minute levels of play and a dinner break on Monday afternoon. Once Level 7 begins, everyone else is out of luck.

BLUFF WPT Ones to Watch Justin Zaki and Jose Serratos each managed to end the day with some chips, and they’ll be joined in the field by several of their peers on Day 1B. Both Garrett Greer and Kristy Arnett are confirmed to be in the field, and its likely that at least a couple other Ones to Watch will also enter the fray.

Action gets underway at 11 am ET Monday morning, with eight levels of poker and a dinner break standing between all those who enter and a chip bag with their name on it. Whether its Hwang or one of hundreds of other players with a dream, one lucky player will be holding up the WPT Champions Cup and enjoying the lion’s share of a $3 million guaranteed prizepool on Friday night.

2015 WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open – End of Day 1A Chip Counts

  1. Andy Hwang – 251,300
  2. Dan Wach – 209,900
  3. Jason Helder – 200,900
  4. Greg Weber = 156,200
  5. Eric Panayiotou – 139,600
  6. Brian Haveson – 132,000
  7. Ami Alibay – 128,800
  8. Matt Affleck – 125,800
  9. Jake Schwartz – 124,900
  10. Andy Frankenberger – 115,000
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Tim Fiorvanti

Tim Fiorvanti graduated from St. John's University with a B.S. in Journalism in 2008. After several years in the industry, he started working for BLUFF in the summer of 2010. He worked his way up at BLUFF and joined full time as a Senior Writer in April of 2012. Fiorvanti now serves as the Managing Editor of BLUFF. He's a tortured Mets and Jets fan, along with several other frustrating allegiances, but he's also a two-time defending BLUFF Fantasy Football Champion.
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