[Hall of Fame]1995 Hall of Fame Poker Classic

No-Limit Texas Hold'em

$1,500 Buy-in
Entries: 188
Total Prize Money: $282,000

[Moss Obituary]

1994 Winner: Carl McKelvey -- $77,400

1995 Champion: NOLI FRANCISCO

The Winners

1. Noli Francisco $112,800
East New York, New Jersey
2. Jim Bucci 56,400
Hollywood, Maryland
3. Mel Weiner 28,200
Los Angeles, California
4. Roy "Cowboy" Dudley 18,330
Houston, Texas
5. Bob Gardner 14,100
Pauls Valley, Oklahoma
6. Ron Stanley 9,870
Las Vegas, Nevada
7. Allen Baker 7,050
Houston, Texas
8. Tom Oreck 5,640
Houston, Texas
9. Jose Rosenkrantz 4,230
Miami Lakes, Florida
10. Barbara Enright 3,384
Van Nuys, California
11. Peter Brehm 3,384
Houston, Texas
12. Jack Keller 3,384
Sugarloaf Shores, Florida
13. Dan Harrington 2,820
Las Vegas, Nevada
14. Clark Parrott 2,820
Seminole, Texas
15. Annie Duke 2,820
Las Vegas, Nevada
16. Pat Fleming 2,256
Las Vegas, Nevada
17. Rupert Housden 2,256
Redford, England
18. Paul Vinci 2,256
Whittier, California

The Showdown

. Binion's Horseshoe, December 17, 1995 -- Noli Francisco, a 53-year-old recreational poker player from East New York, New Jersey, charged past 187 opponents to lasso first place in the ninth event of the 1995 Hall of Fame Poker Classic. For his victory in the $1,500 buy-in no-limit Texas Hold'em competition, Francisco was awarded $112,800 and a 14-karat gold watch, custom designed by Neiman-Marcus.

. This is the second Hall of Fame title for Francisco, who also holds a title from the Diamond Jim Brady tournament and has cashed in several other major competitions. An investor in both the real estate and import businesses, Francisco has been playing poker for 25 years.

. Francisco came to the final table in good chip position, but when heads-up play began, runner-up Jim Bucci had almost a 2-to-1 advantage. Several hands later, Francisco seized a substantial lead when he moved all in on the flop with AC KH and Bucci, who held 7C 6C called. The flop showed 6S 5H3C, giving Bucci a pair of sixes and a gutshot straight draw. But the turn brought Francisco the KC for a higher pair, and when a blank fell on the river, Bucci was left short-stacked. It was all over two hands later when Bucci called all in before the flop with J-5 offsuit. The final board showed 7-4-3-2-10, and Francisco, who held AS 6S, won the pot and his second Hall of Fame title with an ace high.

. Bucci, a 59-year-old recreational player from Hollywood, Maryland, received $56,400 for his second-place finish. Retired from the Washington Post, where he worked as a printer, Bucci holds a title from the World Poker Finals and has cashed in several other major tournaments. He began playing poker at the age of 25.

. Winning third place in the no-limit Hold'em competition and taking home $28,200 was Mel Weiner of Los Angeles. Weiner, who came to the final table as the chip leader, was knocked out of the tournament when he moved all in before the flop with QS 7S and was called by Bucci, who held A-9 offsuit. The flop came A-Q-2 with one spade, and the 9D fell on the turn to give Bucci two pair. Only a queen could save Weiner, and when the river brought an eight, Bucci took down the pot.

. As a special note, Dan Harrington of Las Vegas, the reigning World Champion of Poker, placed 13th in the no-limit Hold'em event and pocketed $2,820 in prize money.

[Final Table]

The Final Hand

[Final Hand]

[Binion's Horseshoe]
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Page last modified: 12-19-95