DES MOINES — At least three people in two states have beaten astronomical odds to become the nation’s latest Powerball millionaires.
Sue Dooley, senior drawing manager production coordinator for the Multi-State Lottery Association, said late Wednesday night that three tickets matched the winning numbers and will split the lottery’s latest massive jackpot: $448 million.
“We had three grand prize winners,” Dooley said. “One was in Minnesota and two were in New Jersey.”
The winning numbers drawn Wednesday night were: 05, 25, 30, 58, 59 and Powerball 32.
The (Newark, N.J.) Star-Ledger reported early today that a spokeswoman for the New Jersey Lottery said that one of the multimillion-dollar tickets was purchased at a supermarket in South Brunswick, N.J., and the other ticket was sold in Little Egg Harbor, N.J.
Information on the Minnesota ticket was not available early today.
The allure of capturing the latest massive Powerball jackpot had players in a buying frenzy, further confirming a trend that lottery officials say has become the big ticket norm: Fatigued Powerball players, increasingly blase about smaller payouts, often don’t get into the game until the jackpot offers big bucks.
During Wednesday night’s telecast, Powerball officials announced the jackpot that previously in the day was pegged at $425 million had grown to an estimated $448 million.
Meghan Graham, a convenience store worker from Brookline, Mass., has purchased nearly a dozen Powerball tickets in recent months thanks to the huge jackpots, and the third largest-ever pot was enough reason to buy again.
“The more it keeps increasing, that means nobody is winning ... a lot of people are gonna keep buying tickets and tickets and tickets and you never know, you just might get lucky if you pick the right numbers,” she said.
A recent game change intended to build excitement about the lottery increased the frequency of huge jackpots, and Wednesday’s jackpot drawing comes only a few months after the biggest Powerball jackpot in history — a $590 million pot won in Florida by an 84-year-old widow. The second largest Powerball jackpot was won in November and split between two tickets from Arizona and Missouri.