Maria Lampropulos Crowned First Female PCA Champ, US Players Miss Final

January 15, 2018
Maria Lampropulos Crowned First Female PCA Champ, US Players Miss Final


Argentina’s Maria Lampropulos became the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure‘s first female champion taking down the 2018 PCA $10,300 Main Event at the Atlantis Paradise Island resort in the Bahamas on Sunday.

Lampropulos topped a field of 582 players over six days of play to capture the event’s $1,081,100 first-place prize. She also earned a $30,000 Platinum Pass that will give her entry into the $8-million-added $25,000 PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship at the 2019 PCA, plus $5,000 to cover travel and expenses.

Lampropulos beat Canadian online poker legend Shawn Buchanan heads up to win the title. German high roller Koray Aldemir finished third and 2017 Global Poker Index Player of the Year Adrian Mateos from Spain took fourth. Mateos led Sunday’s final six to start out. Plus, both Buchanan and Aldemir held the lead short-handed. However, Lampropulos, who never led until after she got heads up for the title, persevered to book the win.

Lampropulos comes back to win

In fact, the Argentine was facing a 2:1 chip deficit to start heads-up play, but won two coin flips to snatch the chip lead from Buchanan before putting him away.

Lampropulos played in a slow and deliberate fashion that saw other players call the clock on her several times throughout the final day. It made the live stream difficult to watch at times, but certainly worked out for her.

This marked the second seven-figure score for Lampropulos in less than a year. In April 2017, she won the partypoker Millions Live event in Nottingham, UK for £1,000,000.

The deepest run by an American was put together by none other than 2016 GPI Player of the Year David Peters.

Peters made it all the way to the event’s fifth day, and even held the chip lead for a time. However, the Toledo, Ohio native bubbled the final table finishing in 11th place for $75,640. Peters was down to a little over half a million in chips when he moved all in preflop with ace-jack off suit. Canadian Daniel Coupal made the call with the dominating ace-king and turned a king to leave Peters drawing dead.

Of course, Peters is coming off a year in which he earned $3,541,519 in live tournaments, following up on the $7,564,647 in live tournament cashes he booked on his way to winning 2016 GPI POY honors.

Peters at the PCA

His lone cash at the PokerStars Championship Bahamas in 2017 was a third-place finish in a $5,000 Turbo event for $28,440. However, the 2016 PCA was a big one for Peters. He booked three scores, including two Hyper-Turbo Survivor cashes for close to $144,905 and a fifth-place finish in the $100,000 Super High Roller for $461,340.

No Americans made the final table of the 2018 PCA Main Event event. However, 22 US players did managed to make the list of the 87 who cashed. This included Darren Rabinowitz, who was the first player to bust in the money, earning a $17,500 min-cash for his 87th-place finish.

Eight US players made the top 40. This included the Buffalo, New York mother and son tandem of Sharman Olshan (33rd for $25,400) and Aaron Olshan (39th for $25,400).

Veteran American Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greenstein finished 47th for $22,020.

Americans wrap up PCA prelims and post-lims with big scores

As the 2018 PCA Main Event was wrapping up, American Almedin Imsirovic beat fellow American and 2013 World Series of Poker champion Ryan Riess heads up to win the final $10,000 Single-Day High Roller event on the schedule.

Imsirovic earned $160,050 for the victory and the former WSOP champ had to settle for a $115,770 consolation prize.

Plus, Canadian Christopher Kruk made a miraculous comeback heads up to beat American Jonathan Jaffe in the $25,000 High Roller event. Kruk collected $836,350 and Jaffe settled for $569,760 in runner-up money.

Photo Credit: Neil Stoddart/Rational Intellectual Holdings/

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