Sebastien Soares Dominates $360 HORSE, Scores First Hard Rock Trophy

2018 Rock N’ Roll Poker Open 
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida
Event 3
$360 HORSE 
Entries: 98
Prize Pool: $24,400 
November 15, 2018 

Sebastien Soares wins $360 HORSE

Sebastien Soares doesn’t get the opportunity to play mixed games very often. Living in Montreal for most of the year, they mostly spread no-limit hold’em and pot-limit Omaha.

He got a chance to play a few different games on Thursday and in the early hours of Friday morning, he shipped his first Hard Rock trophy in the $360 HORSE. He defeated Barry Levy heads-up to best the 98-entry field and earned $8,965 for his first victory in South Florida.

“I slipped one of these tournaments in the past,” said Soares. “I got second place. I felt good today, so I wanted to win.”

Soares owns two restaurants in Montreal and lives there most of the year. He has a second home in South Florida, which allowed him to get away from the cold, and the big bet games, and get into Thursday’s mixed event.

“Back in Montreal, we don’t have these mixed games tournaments often,” said Soares.

The Canadian was cruising for most of the tournament. He had the chip lead with two tables left, just outside of the money and never lost it from there.

He came into the final table with the chip lead, continued to chip up and started heads-up play with a 3-to-1 chip lead over Levy, a native of New York.

“I was playing good, but I was obviously getting good cards and good flops. I just kept going,” said Soares about his performance.

Soares won the majority of the pots, and all of the key ones, heads-up before putting Levy away in limit hold’em when they got all in preflop with Soares’ ace-five against Levy’s pocket eights. Soares flopped the wheel and Levy picked up $5,513 for his runner-up finish.

The 98-entry field paid out the top 13 spots. Carey Pickus, who finished runner-up to Phil Hui in this event last year, finished one spot worse this year. She finished third for $3,381.

Hard Rock mixed regulars Joel Harwood and John Holley also made the final table. Harwood, father of poker pro Loni, finished fifth for $1,720, and Holley busted in seventh for $1,169. Poker reporter Mickey Doft finished just shy of the final table. He took home $809 for his 11th place finish. He now has a mixed game cash every year over the last four years of his budding poker career.

Here is a look at the full results:

1st: Sebastien Soares – $8,965
2nd: Barry Levy – $5,513
3rd: Carey Pickus – $3,381
4th: Michael Barry – $2,205
5th: Joel Harwood – $1,720
6th: Antonio Pezzi – $1,374
7th: John Holley – $1,169
8th: Mark Hurst – $1,014
9th: Kevin Nettle – $897
10th: Mihails Morozovs – $809
11th: Mickey Doft – $809
12th: James Juvanic – $809
13th: Michael Sopko – $735


Event 3: Sebastien Soares Wins ($8,965), Barry Levy Eliminated in 2nd ($5,513)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 23: 25,000/50,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 1 of 98

Sebastien Soares

Limit Hold’em 

Sebastien Soares raised on the button and Barry Levy made it three bets out of the big blind. Soares raised to force Levy all in for the extra 5,000.

Soares showed Ad5h and needed help against Levy’s 8s8c.

“Good luck,” said Levy.

The flop came 4d3h2d and Soares flopped the wheel to leave Levy drawing to runners.

“Not that much luck,” said Levy with a chuckle.

The turn was the Jh and the river was the Jc. Levy was eliminated and Soares won the tournament. Levy earned $5,513 for his runner-up finish and Soares took home the trophy and $8,965 for his victory.

Barry Levy

Sebastien Soares – $360 HORSE Champion
Barry Levy – Eliminated 

Event 3: Carey Pickus – 3rd Place ($3,381)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 23: 25,000/50,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 2 of 98

Carey Pickus

Omaha Hi-Lo 

Carey Pickus raised on the button and Sebastien Soares made it three bets out of the small blind. Pickus capped it and Soares called.

The flop was JdTh5d and Soares bet. Pickus called and was all in for her last 15,000.

Soares showed Ah8h5h3s and was in the lead against Pickus’ AcKd9h4s.

The turn was the 6s and the river was the Ts. Soares scooped the whole pot with a pair of fives and Pickus was out in third for $3,381. Soares goes heads-up against Barry Levy for the trophy with about 75% of the chips in play.

Sebastien Soares – 840,000
Carey Pickus – Eliminated 

Event 3: Michael Barry – 4th Place ($2,205)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 22: 20,000/40,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 3 of 98

Michael Barry

Stud Hi 

Michael Barry: AhQs / 6sKh4hTs / 2c
Barry Levy: 6h6c / Th4d7sAc / 5h

Michael Barry got his last 44,000 into the middle on third street against Barry Levy. Levy started with buried sixes and was in the lead.

Neither improved as the boards ran out like they did above and Levy won the pot with a pair of sixes to eliminate Barry in fourth for $2,205.

Barry Levy – 475,000
Michael Barry – Eliminated 

Event 3: Carey Pickus Doubles Through Michael Barry

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 22: 20,000/40,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 4 of 98

Stud Hi

Carey Pickus: QsQd / 9s7h6cTd / 6s
Michael Barry: AsQh / 9cAhJc5s / 3h

Carey Pickus got all in on third street for about 60,000 against Michael Barry. Barry spiked an ace on fourth street to take the lead against Pickus’ buried queens, but she rivered two pair to stay alive, leaving Barry as the short stack.

Carey Pickus – 120,000
Michael Barry – 44,000


Event 3: Joel Harwood – 5th Place ($1,720)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 21: 15,000/30,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 4 of 98

Joel Harwood

Omaha Hi-Lo 

Joel Harwood was getting up from his seat and Barry Levy was scooping the pot.

The completed board read QsJd5h3c9s and Levy had tabled AdTs8s2h, good for the second nut straight. Harwood showed AsAhKd7h and was eliminated in fifth place for $1,720.

Barry Levy – 400,000
Joel Harwood – Eliminated 

Event 3: Antonio Pezzi – 6th Place ($1,374)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 21: 15,000/30,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 5 of 98

Antonio Pezzi


Sebastien Soares limped in from the small blind and Antonio Pezzi checked his option in the big blind. The flop is 9s7d5s and Soares bet.

Pezzi called and the turn was the Ks. Soares bet again and Pezzi called, leaving himself with just 9,000. The river was the 2d and Soares bet the river. Pezzi folded.

On the next hand, Soares raised on the button and Pezzi committed the last of his chips from the small blind. Barry Levy defended his big blind and created a side pot between himself and Soares.

The flop was QdTs3h. Levy checked and Soares bet. Levy called. The turn was the Jd and Levy checked again. Soares bet and Levy called.

The river was the 2d and both players check. Soares shows KdKs, Levy showed KhTd and Pezzi tabled Qc8c.

Soares won the pot and Pezzi hit the rail in sixth place for $1,374.

Sebastien Soares – 420,000
Barry Levy – 187,000
Antonio Pezzi – Eliminated 

Event 3: John Holley – 7th Place ($1,169)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 20: 12,000/24,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 6 of 98

John Holley

Stud Hi-Lo

John Holley: Td3d / Qd9d6sKh / 3h
Sebastien Soares: 7d2d / 3s7s5hQc / 9h

Sebastien Soares was the bring-in and John Holley completed. Soares defended.

Holley bet the last of his chips on fourth and Soares called. Holley showed four to a flush and was up against three low cards and a pair of sevens.

Over the course of the runout, Holley could only improve to a pair of threes and Soares never improved. Soares won the pot with a pair of sevens and Holley was eliminated in seventh.

Sebastien Soares – 315,000
John Holley – Eliminated

Event 3: Carey Pickus vs. John Holley

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 19: 10,000/20,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 7 of 98

Stud Hi 

Carey Pickus: [x][x] / 9c7dKhJc / [x]
John Holley: [x][x] / 4h8sTd5c / [x]

Carey Pickus completed on third and John Holley raised. On fourth, Pickus checked and Holley bet. Pickus called.

On fifth, both players checked. Pickus led out on sixth and seventh. Holley called both bets.

Pickus showed AdJh9s in the hole, good for two pair, and Holley mucked his hand.

Carey Pickus – 265,000
John Holley – 25,000

Event 3: Mark Hurst – 8th Place ($1,014)

$360 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 19: 10,000/20,000 Limits
Players Remaining: 7 of 98

Mark Hurst

Omaha Hi-Lo

On the turn with the board reading KsKc3c5c, Sebastien Soares led out from the small blind. Antonio Pezzi folded from the big blind and Mark Hurst thought for a minute before moving all in for 35,000. Soares quickly called.

“I’ve got the boat,” said Soares.

Soares had half the pot locked up with KdJc3h4c and needed to fade a low card to scoop against Hurst’s Ah9s5d2h.

The river was the 3s and Soares scooped the pot to eliminate Hurst in eighth place for $1,014.

Sebastien Soares – 385,000
Mark Hurst – Eliminated