Victor Paredes Wins WSOPC Thunder Valley Main Event

Victor Paredes won the WSOPC Thunder Valley Main Event for $169,294 a few months after narrowly missing out on a WSOP bracelet.

The World Series of Poker Circuit tour headed to California for the WSOPC Thunder Valley Main Event. The $1,700 buy-in tournament drew in a 587-strong crowd, which Victor Paredes outlasted. Paredes got his hands on a coveted gold WSOPC ring in addition to $169,294.

Paredes came close to securing his first WSOP bracelet last fall. The El Salvador born Californian finished second in a $600 No-Limit Hold’em/Pot-Limit Omaha event. That runner-up finish earned Paredes a career-best $78,604. He now has an even larger prize, his first six-figure score.

The final table gathered on January 24 with Paredes third in chips. Each finalist was guaranteed a $16,140 return on their investment, not bad for a $1,700 event.

Brian Foley had limited time at the final table. Former WSOP Main Event champion Jerry Yang open-shoved from the small blind, and Foley called off his short stack from the big blind. Foley flipped over Kx-4x, but Yand held Ad-Ah. The community cards did not rescue Foley, and he bowed out in ninth.

Dong Meng crashed out before Foley’s seat went cold. Meng opened with Qx-Qx before four-betting all-in when Garrett Anaya re-raised. Unfortunately for Meng, Anaya made his move with Kx-Kx and made an easy call. A ten-high board sealed Meng’s fate.

Yang Leads, Paredes Fifth From Seventh

Yang led the remaining seven players going into a break at midday local time. Those seven became six when Vishnu Chada pushed all-in with 7s-5d on an Ad-5s-4c flop. Anaya snap-called with Ah-Kh. Queens landed on the turn and river, which busted Chada.

The second queens versus kings set-up claimed the tournament life of Salas Alam. Anaya opened to 150,000 in the cutoff, Feiyune Wu three-bet to 500,000, and Alam four-bet shoved for 1,200,000 from the small blind. Anaya folded, but Wu called. Wu showed Kd-Ks, Alam the Qc-Qd, and the board fell Ac-Js-Kc-2c-3s.

Wu claimed another scalp when his 9c-9s prevailed against Lian Liu’s Ac-9s. Wu’s hand remained true as the five community cards ran Kh-Js-6s-Kc-Qs.

Paredes hit quad fives in a hand with Wu, which pushed him towards the chip lead. He locked in the chip lead by sending Yang home in fourth-place. Yang three-bet all-in for 1,800,000 with Ah-2c after Paredes had opened with 8s-8h. The champion-elect called, and turned a set on the 9d-6h-8d-Kc-3d board. Yang banked $57,772, his first cash for almost three years.

Top Two Finishers Bag Six-Figure Prizes

Pay jumps were now substantial with more than $30,000 difference between third and second. In addition, the top two finishers reeled in six-figure prizes.

The elimination of Wu in third progressed the tournament into the heads-up stage. The soon-to-be-busted Wu led for 400,000 in the 3s-9h-4h flop, only for Paredes to raise all-in. Wu considered his options before calling. Wu held Ah-4d, Paredes the dominating As-9s, which held to sent Wu to the showers.

Paredes held 11,400,000 chips compared to Anaya’s 6,200,000, and it did not take long to press home his advantage. The final hand essentially played itself. Paredes opened to 500,000 with Ad-Ah, Anaya three-bet to 1,700,000, and Paredes ripped it in. Anaya called with Ac-Qs, a powerful hand heads-up but one in a world of trouble in this spot.

Anaya was drawing dead by the turn of the 6s-Jc-9d-Js-7h board, and had to make do with a $104,629 consolation prize. Paredes, however, walked away with a career-high score worth $169,294.

Place Player Prize
1 Victor Paredes $169,294
2 Garrett Anaya $104,629
3 Feiyue Wu $77,294
4 Jerry Yang $57,772
5 Lian Liu $43,694
6 Salas Alam $33,445
7 Vishnu Chada $25,912
8 Dong Meng $20,234
9 Brian Foley $16,140

The WSOPC is currently at the Horsehoe Tunica, Mississippi where it remains until January 31. It heads to Isle Casino Pompano Park, Florida from February 3, before making its way to Harrah’s Cherokee in North Carolina from February 17.

Brad Johnson

You name the game, and you can bet your bottom dollar that Brad has either played it or placed a wager on it! Brad calls himself a natural gambler, and someone who gains as much enjoyment from writing about the crazy game of poker as he does playing it.


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