While attending classes, Froment took out loans and obtained credit cards to get by. His strategy backfired because the credit card payments multiplied and other expenses like rent, utilities and groceries piled up.
“I was at the point where I was paying $350 a month on credit cards alone. The $600 I was making every two weeks only paid the bills. I lived paycheck to paycheck and lived off ramen noodles,” Froment said.
Of course, he didn’t always get to eat, sometimes the money had to go to a more important bill, and he couldn’t even afford ramen noodles.
Eventually, he got a job at Wal-Mart and had to leave school because money problems were so overwhelming. “When I first left school, that was the hardest part for me,” said Froment, 23. “It hurt, because it seemed like everyone in Shippensburg except for me was going to college.”
Going back to school was like a faraway dream because of his financial situation until last week when he took third place and won $3,150 in an online poker tournament.
The buy-in was $60 and there was $30,000 in prize money to be distributed. There were 500 people vying for first place, but only the top 45 would get paid. With his girlfriend, Tara by his side, he soared to the final table.
The tournament started off a little shaky. “I was down to less than half my chips,” Froment said. “Tara kept telling me to make sure I didn’t make stupid calls and lose money. There were so many times I was tempted to call the other people’s bets, but I folded and saved money as a result.”
His strategy was to play aggressively, but not in the maniac/loose way, instead he played smart aggressive. He only won a few pots until they made the money. He certainly wasn’t planning on making it to the final table. But luckily he hit a rush of good cards and he moved up in the ranks.
Eventually, he was sent home after knocking out the 4th and 5th place finishers. “I had been playing for hours at that point and I was tired and nervous. Tara kept telling me to stay sharp.”
“I wasn’t mad at all, I was so surprised to see how good I did,” Froment said.
With a cash prize of $3,150 Froment had a big smile on his face and even bigger plans for the money.
“This poker tournament couldn’t have come at a better time. The attorney general of Pennsylvania sent me a letter saying I needed to pay back the school, or all of my things would be repossessed – if I wouldn’t have won the tournament, everything would’ve been gone.”
Froment cut the school a check for $2,297 to pay off his debts and apply for the next semester. Although he was five days late to apply, given the circumstances, Shippensburg is allowing him to return this spring.
Like many poker players, Froment never even deposited any of his own money on the site, he won a freeroll and scored $9, and from there he just worked his way up. Eventually he built his bankroll up to $700!
Josh will be heading to Iraq in May so the win, and his return to Shippensburg is that much more special to him. We wish him well!
*editor's note - Online Poker Rooms are the easiest and best way to learn to play poker; it's free, which makes it very affordable, while you hone your skills at the green felt. Once you are comfortable in the play of the game, you can move up to real money play, or win your own bankroll starting from -0- by playing free rolls. It's a win, win. You don't have to leave home, the price is $free$, and you stand to gain a wealth of poker information and make $$ too.*