Tag Archives: Event 11

“Fly Eagles Fly” – AJ Kelsall Wins Another Seminole Hard Rock Tampa Trophy to Add to his Collection

2023 Tampa Poker Classic
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Tampa, Florida
Event 11

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed
Entries: 108
Prize Pool: $104,760
September 12, 2023

AJ Kelsall

AJ Kelsall added $28,420 to his career earnings of more than $2.8 million when took home the title in Event 11 at the SPS tournament series at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa. The local resident was born in Pennsylvania, and you need to look no further than his fandom for Philadelphia sports teams to see that first hand.

Kelsall holds a World Series of Poker gold bracelet, and he has three WSOP Circuit gold rings as well. Kelsall has nine tournament victories in his career (including numerous wins here at SHR Tampa), and the largest tournament score he has claimed was worth $443,259 for a third-place finish in a six-max no-limit hold’em event earlier this year at the WSOP.

We caught up with Kelsall shortly after the victory, and here is what he had to say after the win: “It definitely feels good, I have a few seconds and thirds lately, so it feels good to win one. I had some trophy bets so winning is good. I got 325 Allen Kessler dollars coming, that’s like 40 lunches at McDonald’s for him right there [laughs].”

There was a stretch of the final playdown where Kelsall went into “Fly Eagles Fly” mode and took four players in a row tonight. “I knocked out eighth through fourth, someone else knocked out third, and I obviously knocked out second, so I knocked out everyone else in the last eight. With maybe like nine or ten people left I had 100k, I was in the last two or three [stacks]. I knocked someone out over there to get it down to seven, and then knocked out two more people right away. So in probably ten minutes I knocked three people out, and then I was the chip leader,” said Kelsall about the hot run that took him to the top of the chip counts.

“Maybe I’m a six-max specialist [laughs], I don’t I know, I guess that’s a good thing to be. I really enjoy six-max because typically people play looser, there’s more good hands. Like ace-jack for instance is a much better hand in six-max than full rings. The guy I played heads-up was a decent player, but he was playing very tight the whole time. So six-max typically makes you play looser, but he wasn’t. It makes it a little bit more fun, and you get to play more,” said Kelsall when he was asked about his success in six-max events.

“I never chop, and part of the reason is because you don’t get heads-up and get that experience very often. So when I play in bigger things like the World Series like you were mentioning when I came third in that six-max, it’s good to have short-handed experience whether it’s four-handed, three-handed or heads-up for those bigger times. So for me when I play bigger things these experiences in some smaller tournaments I think really helps a lot,” Kelsall said when he was asked about heads-up battle that defined the tournament.

Kelsall made a good metaphor for the final stages of a poker tournament the other night when he stated that you wouldn’t stop playing on the 16th hole of a round of golf if everyone was tied when it comes to chops in poker. When he was asked about that after the hard-fought heads-up final tonight, Kelsall offered a few other sports analogies that were on point. “I’m a competitive guy so poker cures that competitive instinct for me. When it’s 4-4 in the ninth inning, or 28-28 in the fourth quarter in football, that’s the most exciting part of the game. That’s the exciting part, playing three-handed or heads-up. That’s why Steph Curry is so good, because when there’s a minute left he wants to have the ball. He doesn’t just say, ‘let’s just call it boys,’ right,” said Kelsall.

Kelsall will be playing every day the rest of the series, focusing primarily on mixed games while mixing in the big money no-limit hold’em events as well depending on the schedule of the day.

Final Results:

1st: AJ Kelsall – $28,420 + SPS Trophy
2nd: Blaise Ingoglia – $18,470
3rd: Sean Boland – $12,360
4th: Ryan Luker – $8,530
5th: Daniel Zucker – $6,070
6th: Ricardo Eyzaguirre – $4,470
7th: Mark Koeln – $3,400
8th: Johnny Bromberg – $3,400
9th: Oscar Lindo Zeledon – $2,670
10th: Tarun Gulati – $2,670
11th: Frank Bramman – $2,180
12th: Josh Snow – $2,180
13th: Ryan Mazurkiewicz – $1,850
14th: Felipe Koury – $1,850
15th Jeremy Joseph – $1,630
16th: James Tomblin – $1,630
17th: Amie Martini – $1,490
18th: Dana Caruso – $1,490

Event 9 Flight F: Jose Hernandez Leads 26 Survivors with 480,000

$200 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure
Level 15: 3,000/6,000 with a 6,000 ante
Flight Remaining Players: 26 of 260

Flight F has come to a close with Jose Hernandez leading the final 26. He stacked up 480,000 at the end of play.

The 99 players that advanced to Day 2 from the 973 entries will return at 2 pm on Wednesday to play down to a champion. Here are the official chip counts for the flight:



Event 11: AJ Kelsall – 1st Place ($28,420); Blaise Ingoglia ($18,470)

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 25:  30,000/60,000 with a 60,000 ante
Remaining Players: 1 of 108 Entries

AJ Kelsall

Blaise Ingoglia got all in with 5h5d preflop, and AJ Kelsall had him covered holding AcQc on the button.

The final board ran out Ad6s4d10s7d, and Ingoglia was eliminated in second place, good for $18,740. That made Kelsall the champion of the tournament, and he took home $28,420 up top along with the SPS guitar pick trophy.

Stay tuned for the winner photo and interview with the local champion.

Event 11: Blaise Blazes to the Chip Lead

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 23:  20,000/40,000 with a 40,000 ante
Remaining Players: 2 of 108 Entries

Blaise Ingoglia

Blaise Ingoglia has gained the chip advantage in the heads-up final against AJ Kelsall with close to a 2:1 chip advantage.

There was one all-in hand between the final two, but both players held an ace on a final board dealt 8-7-4-8-4 where the kickers didn’t matter.

Seat 1: Blaise Ingoglia – 2,070,000
Seat 6: AJ Kelsall – 1,170,000

Event 11: Just About Even Stevens in the Final Match

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 23:  20,000/40,000 with a 40,000 ante
Remaining Players: 2 of 108 Entries

Heads-up play has been going for a hot minute between AJ Kelsall and Blaise Ingoglia. Neither player has been all-in yet as they test each other out during the final battle, and now they’re separated by just two big blinds.

Seat 1: Blaise Ingoglia – 1,580,000
Seat 6: AJ Kelsall – 1,660,000

Event 11: Chip Stacks Scaling Towards AJ Kelsall

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 22:  15,000/30,000 with a 30,000 ante
Remaining Players: 2 of 108 Entries

After a prolonged period of pretty even stacks between the final two players, things are now tilting in the direction of AJ Kelsall. Here is a look at the chips among the final two players.

Seat 1: Blaise Ingoglia – 900,000
Seat 6: AJ Kelsall – 2,340,000

Event 11: Sean Boland – 3rd Place ($12,360)

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 20:  10,000/20,000 with a 20,000 ante
Remaining Players: 2 of 108 Entries

Sean Boland

Sean Boland busted when his A-Q ran into the A-J of Blaise Ingoglia on a final board reading  A-10-7-10-J. Boland busted in third place, good for $12,360. Boland was the winner of the July no-limit hold’em leader board, and he won a prize package worth $8,900.

Ingoglia stacked up 1.82 million after collecting the pot, which gives him a slight advantage over the 1.42 million held by Kelsall to start the final match.

Event 11: Ryan Luker – 4th Place ($8,530)

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 20:  10,000/20,000 with a 20,000 ante
Remaining Players: 3 of 108 Entries

Ryan Luker

Ryan Luker has busted out of Event 11 in fourth place, good for $8,530 in prize money.

Here is a look at the chip stacks among the final three players:

Seat 1: Blaise Ingoglia – 1,500,000
Seat 3: Sean Boland – 360,000
Seat 6: AJ Kelsall – 1,380,000

Event 11: “Fly Eagles Fly” – AJ Kelsall Takes Out Two in a Row

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 18:  5,000/15,000 with a 15,000 ante
Remaining Players: 4 of 108 Entries

AJ Kelsall

Ricardo Eyzaguirre was all in for around 300,000 with KcQs from the hijack, and AJ Kelsall had him covered holding Qh9h on the button. The final board read Qd9c7d2c3d, and Eyzaguirre was eliminated in sixth place, good for $4,470.

Just a few minutes later Daniel Zucker was all in for about 200,000 with 10-7, and Kelsall had him covered holding As4c on a board that ran out ace-high. Zucker was eliminated in fifth place to take home $4,470. Kelsall increased his chip lead to 1.43 million after collecting the pot.

A fellow player at the table said “Fly Eagles Fly” after the one-two knockout punch, and it came from no less than a New York Jets fan so the final table shared a laugh.

AJ Kelsall – 1,430,000 (95 bb)
Daniel Zucker – Eliminated in Fifth Place ($6,070)
Ricardo Eyzaguirre – Eliminated in Sixth Place ($4,470)


Event 11: Final Table Seating Chart with Chip Counts

$1,100 Deep Stack Six-Handed NLH (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 17:  5,000/10,000 with a 10,000 ante
Remaining Players: 6 of 108 Entries

Here is a look at where the final six players are seated at the final table with chip counts:

Seat 1: Blaise Ingoglia – 755,000
Seat 2: Ryan Luker – 320,000
Seat 3: Sean Boland – 635,000
Seat 4: Ricardo Eyzaguirre – 300,000
Seat 5: Daniel Zucker – 200,000
Seat 6: AJ Kelsall – 1,020,000