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Max Young Dominates Late to Win WPO Main Event Title

2020 Winter Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Tampa, Florida
$1,700 WPO Main Event
$200,000 Guaranteed

Entries: 779
Prize Pool: $1,207,450
December 10-14, 2020

By any measure, the 2020 Winter Poker Open was a huge success and it was capped off by the $1,700 buy-in Main Event. The tournament turned out to be the biggest WPO Main Event in our history and recent Florida transfer Max Young captured the outright title along with $226,510.

The Main Event featured a $200,000 guaranteed prize pool with three starting flights. The guarantee was surpassed early on the first day and the three flights combined to put 779 entries into the Main Event for a huge prize pool worth $1,207,450. Those numbers represent two records; the biggest WPO Main Event field and prize pool in our history topping the 671 entries and $1,006,500 prize pool from 2017.

The 779 starters were whittled down to 125 players returning for Day 2 on a Sunday afternoon. Only 78 of those players could earn a piece of the prize pool and the money bubble burst shortly before the first break of the day. Tampa regular Peter Walsworth put the field in the money when he flopped the nut flush versus the second nut flush of Jonathan Marlow.

Max Young took the lead late in Day 2 and carried it to the seven-handed final table on Monday. He was followed closely by Walsworth with Fernando Rodriguez, Darin Thompson, Edgardo Rosario, Phil Hernz, and WSOP Circuit High Roller champ Romeo Mendoza rounding out the final table.

“I started running hot,” Young said of his Day 2 ride. “I felt really good late in the day and honestly wanted to play it out.”

“I hate sleeping on a big Day 3 like that.”

Young held on to his lead throughout the final table while players continued to drop, only giving it up once he was heads-up with Rosario for the title. He let the lead slide momentarily but soon took it back and locked up the WPO Main Event title along with the $226,510 top prize.

“I felt tuned in (at the final table),” Young said. “I’ll be back.”

This win adds to an already impressive list of accomplishments for Young. He is just shy of $2 million in career earnings along with two WSOP Circuit Main Event rings, a WPTDeepStacks San Diego title, a win on the Mid-States Poker Tour, and a Big Stax 1500 win in Pennsylvania. An Oregon native now calling Florida home, Young seems to pick up wins all around the country.

Congratulations to Max and we look forward to his return to defend his title.

Final table results:

1st: Max Young – $226,510 + Guitar Trophy
2nd: Edgardo Rosario – $158,828
3rd: Peter Walsworth – $102,211
4th: Fernando Rodriguez – $73,618
5th: Darin Thompson – $56,497
6th: Phil Hernz – $45,605
7th: Romeo Mendoza – $37,890

Main Event: Max Young Defeats Edgardo Rosaria for the Title

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 34:  150,000/300,000 with a 300,000 ante

Max Young

While the previous level had little activity, they came out blazing after the break. The first few hands saw chips slide back and forth until the last of the tournament.

Max Young limped his button and Edgardo Rosario made a huge move all in for 9,700,000. Young confirmed the count, thought for a minute and called with a chance to end it.

Young: AdJd
Rosario: 3c3s

It was a big race for a lot of money. Rosario needed to hold to double into a big lead and the Kh8c7c was safe. His lead evaporated when Young paired his jack on the Jh turn and Young made overkill trip jacks on the Jc river. Young took the rest of the chips in the tournament and became the 2020 WPO Main Event champion.

Rosario earned $158,828 for his second-place finish while Young earned $226,510 for the title.

1st: Max Young – $226,510
2nd: Edgardo Rosario – $158,828

Edgardo Rosario

Main Event: Counts on Break

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 34:  150,000/300,000 with a 300,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 779

There were no major pots over the first 30 minutes of heads up play and they are now enjoying a 15-minute break. Edgardo Rosario momentarily took the lead after chipping away but Max Young is back on top when they resume.

Seat 3: Max Young – 13,550,000 (45 bb)
Seat 7: Edgardo Rosario – 9,825,000 (33 bb)

1st: $226,510
2nd: $158,828

Main Event: Heads Up Counts

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 32:  100,000/200,000 with a 200,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 779

Edgardo Rosario (left) versus Max Young (right)

The heads-up battle for the WPO Main Event title is underway with Max Young leading Edgardo Rosario with a lot of money on the line.

Seat 3: Max Young – 13,800,000 (69 bb)
Seat 7: Edgardo Rosario – 9,575,000 (48 bb)

Remaining payouts:

1st: $226,510
2nd: $158,828

Main Event: Peter Walsworth – 3rd Place ($102,211)

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 32:  100,000/200,000 with a 200,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 779

Peter Walsworth

Peter Walsworth opened to 450,000 from the button and Edgardo Rosario ripped it in from the big blind for 4,725,000. Walsworth waited for a count and called with a slightly bigger stack.

Rosario: 6s5h
Walsworth: AcQs

Walsworth was ahead but Rosario hit the KsKd5s flop to take the lead. Walsworth could not find a save on the 8s turn or Jc river and was left very short. Two hands later, he was sent out by Max Young to set up the heads up battle for the title.

Edgardo Rosario – 9,575,000 (48 bb)
Peter Walsworth – Eliminated in 3rd place ($102,211)

Main Event: Fernando Rodriguez – 4th Place ($73,618)

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 31:  100,000/150,000 with a 150,000 ante
Players Remaining: 3 of 779

Fernando Rodriguez

There was little action over the first 30 minutes of the new level as they began to chip Max Young’s stack down a little with well-timed shoves. Then Young and Fernando Rodriguez played a pot to the river with the board reading QcQdTd2d9c. Rodriguez bet 500,000, Youngs raised to 1,700,000 and Rodriguez quickly called.

Young showed KhJh for a king-high straight and Rodriguez (reportedly) mucked aces.

That left Rodriguez short and he moved all in for 1,125,000 after a KdQd6d flop. Young called on the button and Edgardo Rosario folded his small blind.

Young: KcJs
Rodriguez: Th9d

Rodriguez needed to catch a diamond or jacks to double but blanked the Qc turn and 4h river to go out in fourth place.

Max Young – 11,800,000 (79 bb)
Fernando Rodriguez – Eliminated in 4th place ($73,618)

Main Event: Break Counts

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 31:  100,000/150,000 with a 150,000 ante
Players Remaining: 4 of 779

Players are taking another 15-minute break with blinds going up to 100,000/150,000 and a 150,000 ante. The average stack is 5,850,000 (39 bb) with four players remaining.

Seat 1: Fernando Rodriguez – 6,525,000 (44 bb)
Seat 2: Peter Walsworth – 3,325,000 (22 bb)
Seat 3: Max Young – 10,225,000 (68 bb)
Seat 7: Edgardo Rosario – 3,300,000 (22 bb)

Remaining payouts:

1st: $226,510
2nd: $158,828
3rd: $102,211
4th: $73,618

Main Event: Edgardo Rosario Doubles Through Peter Walsworth

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 30:  75,000/125,000 with a 125,000 ante
Players Remaining: 4 of 779

Peter Walsworth opened to 275,000 from under the gun and Edgardo Rosario moved all in for 1,225,000 from the small blind. Fernando Rodriguez folded his big and Walsworth called.

Rosario: Ah9d
Walsworth: 8d6d

Rosario was ahead for the double and moved further out front when he paired his nine on the 9s3d2c flop. The 5s turn and Jh river finished the board and Rosario doubled up again.

Edgardo Rosario – 2,700,000 (22 bb)
Peter Walsworth – 5,275,000 (42 bb)

Main Event: Darin Thompson – 5th Place ($56,497)

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 30:  75,000/125,000 with a 125,000 ante
Players Remaining: 4 of 779

Action folded to Max Young in the small blind and he raised to 350,000. Darin Thompson took a peek at his cards, moved all in for 2,125,000 and Young called.

Young: AsJs
Thompson: AdTs

This time around Thompson needed a lot more help to double up. The Qh3c3s flop was no help and the local favorite was eliminated after the 8s turn and 9h river

Max Young – 9,425,000 (75 bb)
Darin Thompson – Eliminated in 5th place ($56,497)

Main Event: Darin Thompson Doubles Through Max Young

$1,700 WPO Main Event (Re-Entry)
$200,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 30:  75,000/125,000 with a 125,000 ante
Players Remaining: 5 of 779

Action folded to Max Young in the small blind and he dropped in a barrel of 100K chips. Darin Thompson checked his cards and called all in for 1,300,000 from the big blind.

Thompson: KhJc
Young: AcTs

Thompson was behind but live then paired his king on the Kc3s2h flop. The Qs turn and 4s river finished the board to give Thompson another double.

Max Young – 7,200,000 (58 bb)
Darin Thompson – 2,700,000 (22 bb)