Maurice Hawkins of West Palm Beach became the first player in the history of the World Series of Poker Circuit Series to win three Circuit main events in one year.

Hawkins defeated a 261-player field Monday at the Palm Beach Kennel Club to earn his eighth career Circuit gold ring, which puts him tied for second all-time.

The win earned him $95,921 and is his eighth career Circuit gold ring. Hawkins, obviously having a stellar year, also made the final table of a World Poker Tour tournament in 2015.

“I set a goal and I accomplished it,” said Hawkins told WSOP officials. “I feel very happy.”

The WSOP release also noted:

In early April Hawkins traveled Council Bluffs, Iowa to catch the end of the series there. The first event he played in was the monster stack event and he won it for just under $20k and his 5th career Circuit gold ring. The next day Hawkins played in the Main Event and he ended up winning that too. The victory was Hawkins’ first career Circuit Main Event win and earned him his 6th career gold ring.

From Council Bluffs Hawkins traveled to Harrah’s Cherokee, which was the very next stop on the Circuit. He scored a runner-up finish in a prelim event and then took down the massive 1,008-player Main Event for $279k. With that victory Hawkins became the first player in Circuit history to win Main Events in back-to-back stops. Hawkins earned his 7th career gold ring for that win.

Only two other players have three career Circuit Main Event titles - Blair Hinkle and Chris Ferguson - and neither of the them were able to win their three in nearly as short of time spans as Hawkins. Hawkins has won his three Circuit Main Events in an eight-month span. Ferguson’s three wins were over a two and a half years and Hinkle’s were over a four-year span.

The $95k Hawkins takes home for this win pushes his career Circuit earnings over the $1 million mark. He becomes only the second player in Circuit history to reach seven-figure territory. Ferguson was the first player to ever cross the $1 million earnings mark and he did it by playing when the buy-ins were much bigger than they are now. Last year at this time Hawkins had $470,973 in career Circuit earnings. He has collected an astounding $570,973 since, and now has $1,011,946 in Circuit earnings.

Hawkins was the short stack in the tournament when the unofficial final table was reached late on Day 2. He eliminated Tim Seidensticker in 10th place to jump up to third in the counts and then went on to dominate the final table. He ended Day 2 with the chip lead and never surrendered it after that point. Day 3 began with five players remaining and Hawkins knocked out Filipp Khavin in 5th place right at the beginning of the day. He then proceeded to eliminate his three remaining opponents over the next three and a half hours.

“We don’t need to explain who won. We all know when he got to the final table he was going to take it down.” said Hawkins.

The victory stamped Hawkins’ pass to the Global Casino Championship for the second straight year. All Main Event winners on the Circuit earn free entry to the $1 million guaranteed bracelet event, the release said.
“I want to win everything,” said Hawkins.