We haven't had a bender at Wall Street Poker like last night in a good long time. It was very refreshing, even if I'm paying for it this morning by being really really tired. Seriously, somewhere around 3PM today, I fully expect to break out with a case of QWERTYITIS when I fall asleep on my keyboard.
So the night started off with two tourneys. There was some impressive maneuvering in the first tourney but it was capitalized by the simple fact that Cheryl couldn't seem to lose a significant hand. Except once, but more on that in a second. I was having a tough go of it. My bluffs weren't working and I was losing chips at a steady clip. Pretty early on, I gave away more than half my stack to Cheryl with AT suited. I had raised PF and Cheryl had come along with me. The flop was KK6. Cheryl checked and I checked behind. The turn was a Jack. Cheryl bets 600 out and I call. I had two things in my head. Number one, Cheryl likes to bluff at uncontested pots. A LOT. So there was a chance I was good here. Even if I wasn't good, there was another outside chance a Queen would fall, making me Broadway. I put Cheryl on a weak Ace. The river was a 6, pairing the board. So now the board was KKJ66. I had two pair with the best kicker. If the board missed Cheryl completely, I could either win, or chop with her Ace. So when she bet another 600, I did the thinking in my head and called. She showed an Ace all right...with a King for top boat. Whoops.
A few hands later, I was in the small blind with 55. 55 was a good hand for me last night and I won two nice pots with it. In this situation it folded around to Cheryl on the button who limp-called. I had about 700 and I shoved with blinds of 100/200. Roger, in the BB, folded and Cheryl said, "I think I have to call you". She committed some chips and showed down JTo! Really? You need to call an all-in with a hand you know is definitely behind for a smallish pot? Ok, what are you gonna do? My pair was ahead but fate dealt me a cruel blow when the flop came Q98 to flop Cheryl the nut straight! OMG. What the hell, dude? I stood up, ready to congratulate Cheryl and get to work on some PS3 killing time but the board paired on the turn with an 8. Uh-oh, I have some outs now. 4 to be exact. The river? A 5!!! The crowd exploded and I raised my hands in victory. What a ridonkulous suckout. 5's baby, 5's.
Unfortunately, I didn't hold on to my chips much longer. Nobody was busting out and with blinds escalating, I finally had to let it ride with 88 and busted out to KJ's and Roger's all-in. Roger had 55 and came over the top of me when I shoved with my 8's. KJ, who had raised initially and was now faced with two all-in's behind him, was pot-committed and called all-in with AsKs. The flop brought two spades and and Ace and I couldn't believe I was briefly ahead of two all-in players PF. The turn was a brick though and I called out for an 8. "One time, dealer, one time!". The river was...the 8 of spades! I jumped up and down in victory as the pot was pushed to KJ. Why, you ask? Because the 8 completed his flush. But I still jumped up and down and when asked why my reply was, "Because my card came!!!"
It was my fault for not being more specific. :-p
As the tourney wore on, an interesting thing occurred. Not one woman at the table busted out. There were 4 playing, Dawn, Christine, charming Kimberly (the new girl) and Cheryl. All the guys dropped off one by one until only the women were left. Dawn, who had literally not won a single pot the entire tourney, busted out on the bubble. Cheryl, at this point, had a MASSIVE chip lead, maybe 3-1 on her nearest competitor. But that didn't deter Christine who outplayed and outflopped Cheryl to take the lead and finally close it out.
I loves me some feminine final tables!
The second tourney was as action packed as the first. Matty Ebs, suffering from some insane play, busted out first when he moved all in during the first round with an overpair to the board and got called by Cheryl for nearly her entire stack with nothing but the nut flush draw and a single over card (the Ace). Of course, an Ace turned and sent Matty to the rail, muttering. How fast did Matty bust out? We hadn't even hit the spacebar yet to start the tournament timer. Ouchie. Luckily, he did well playing online in the meantime, so the cosmos was set right. During the course of this tourney, I was playing great and managed to become the chip leader pretty early on. I was helped out in the middle rounds when I pushed all in with AK suited on a few limpers and was insta-called by Thomas G, who had a healthy 3500 stack. He had limped UTG and called so quickly that I assumed he had KK or AA. In fact, he had ATo, a stunningly bad play on his part (sorry Thomas, it's true!). Amazingly enough, my hand stood up and I now had nearly half the chips in play with 5 players left, a position I would hold onto for the rest of the tourney. Still even more amazing, all of the girls were still in the hunt! Not one male player had yet busted a female player ALL NIGHT! Girl Power!
Of course, my chip stack could not be denied and when Kimberly was forced to move all in after posting the BB for a mere 200 more, 3 players called her since they had limped. Myself included. I was in the SB with Jd5d and had called the limps because I knew Kimberly would committ the rest and that it would check all the way down. I flopped a Jack and rivered another one and when the cards were turned up, Kimberly had AA! My trips were good and she went to the rail, the first female taken down by a male that night. (Hmmm...I like the ring of that). Cheryl busted out on the bubble when she pushed on Christine and lost (I forget the hand) and Dawn squeaked into the money. I was stil the clear chip leader, although I only had a 3500 chip lead on Christine. I immediate offered a chop to secure first place. I gave $15 each to 2nd and 3rd, which was about right in terms of chip proportions. Christine offered some resistance, but finally relented, allowing me to dominate the women (Hmmm...I like the ring of that), and win my first tourney of the season! W00t!
Darko, who had arrived late for the second tourney, busted out early, and then tried to organize a cash game later on, stuck around for said cash game. Astoundingly, on a Thursday night at 11:30p, a .50/1 NLHE cash game broke out that lasted until 3:30am!!! Not only that, but we had a solid 8 players, including Mary Bacini who trekked in at Midnight just for the festivities! The game stayed solid all the way until closing time, which is highly unusual for a school night. In the old days, when tourneys were once a week or less frequent than that, this was a relatively common occurrence. But with our now saturated twice weekly schedule, people are usually too pokered out to play this late. Shweet!
I had a monster run at the cash game, highlighted by three hands against Darko, who usually felts me nearly at will. In the first big hand against him, I had 55 in the SB. Darko had straddled for $2 and it limped around to me. I put in my $1.50 extra and Darko, using his option, raised to $12. It was a healthy raise for the table. Mike M., Shervin's young friend, came in for the raise after limping. Thomas did too. Now it was back to me for $10. There was $40.50 in the pot, including someone else who folded their limp, which meant I was getting 4-1 to make the $10 call with my pair. If you count the implied odds, for which I needed an additional $35 to get into the pot, I was definitely getting the right price to call for my set. So I did. The flop was a beautiful 568, rainbow. Had it been a suited flop, I would definitely have bet out, but the only thing that scared me here was someone hitting their straight. I decided to let a card peel off and checked. I forget what Darko did (I think he bet about $20 which drove out the other players) and I called. Turn was a King. This time, I led out for $25. Darko went into Hollywood mode, most likely thinking I had hit a King, and finally raised another $30. I decided this was enough for me to push and I shoved all in. He insta-called and I saw the last card. A 5! DEMS QUADS, BITCHES! (DQB, DQB, DQB). Ship it! Darko mucked what he later said was AA, and I believe him. He was muttering too about the other two players in the hand. If they hadn't called his raise, with substandard hands I would guess, I wouldn't have had the pot odds to double through. And he was right about that. But this is what you get when you play Loose and Aggressive. Sometimes people will interpret your raises as bluffs and you'll get outdrawn on the flop. It's the other side of the LAG sword.
The next hand I took down Darko with was AQ. I was on the button and when it limped to me, I raised to $10. Darko called and Mike M. called. Flop was something like J96 with two spades. It checked to me and I C-bet out $25. Darko called, Mike folded. Turn was an Ace, pairing me up. Darko checked and I checked, hoping to trap on the river. River was the 6 of spades, completing a flush draw and giving me Aces up with Queen kicker. Darko reached out for $55 and put it in the pot but this time I had his number. I read the sizeable bet as a steal and insta-called whereupon he gave the "you're good" speech and mucked when I showed my hand.
The last takedown was a bit of luckboxery on my part. I had 6h4h in early position and was able to limp in cheaply along with a few other players. The flop was a dangerous looking 654. I had flopped two pair and was nervous to see this action. I check and Darko checks and Mike M. bets out $20. I debate whether he has a straight or not and I decide he's on a draw. I also have to decide if he has me dominated with 65 or a set. My instinct tell me to fold but I foolishly call. Darko calls behind, which made me more nervous than anything. Turn was a brick and I check again. Darko leads out for a suspiciously low $12. Mike calls and I HAVE to call. River is a 6. Woot! I have the second nuts on the board now and it's time to get paid off. This time, I lead out for $25. My feeling is that it's possible that one of these guys have flopped the straight and I have to value bet it. Darko flashes Mary his cards, mutters "This is sick" and makes the crying call. Even better, Mike M. agonizes but calls behind. Darko says, "show the boat" and I oblige. He mucks what mary says is 23 for the flopped straight and Mike M. shows 54 for the flopped bottom two. How he called the river is anyone's guess but Darko had no choice.
Ok, here's the thing. If Darko had come in BIG on the turn, I'm out of there. Seriously, given the betting patterns, I have to put one of the two players on a better hand than me, but his "blocking" bet actually made it cheap for me to see one more miracle card. He said he was worried about 78, but betting larger, maybe $25, allows you to see more clearly where you're at. It was a tough beat, no doubt.
I finishe the night up $250, the big winner. Mary played her usual tight and aggressive style and managed to more than double her buyin! It was a fun time and a GREAT breaking of the new table, which performed very well despite some opening night jitters.
Hmmm...I think I'll name the new table. Any suggestions on a good baby name for it?