Friday the 13th proved to be lucky for a Maine lottery player who hauled in the second-largest jackpot in the history of Mega Millions with a $1.35 billion winning ticket — the seventh time the drawing took place on the unlucky date in its two-decade history.
Lottery officials said on Saturday that a lone ticket holder in the Pine Tree State was the only one to match all six numbers drawn the previous night — 30, 43, 45, 46 and 61, plus the gold Mega Ball 14 — after the jackpot had been building since it was last won on Oct. 14, when a $502 million prize was shared by winners in California and Florida.
The winner would have to take annual annuity payments over the next 29 years to get the entire $1.35 billion, although most winners take the more-immediate cash option, which was an estimated $724.6 million for Friday’s drawing.
It is the first Mega Millions win in Maine’s history, Pat McDonald, Ohio lottery director and lead director of the Mega Millions Consortium, said in a statement Saturday.
“It’s the fourth billion-dollar jackpot in Mega Millions history,” he added.
Friday’s grand prize was the seventh Friday the 13th win since the game began in 2002 and a runner-up to the largest Mega Millions win, which remains a $1.57 billion prize won by a single ticket in South Carolina on Oct. 23, 2018.
It is also the first jackpot won in 25 straight drawings and closely edges out a $1.3 billion ticket sold in Illinois in July to become the second-largest grand prize.
The weekend drawing included a total of 7,072,832 winners across all nine prize tiers, including 14 million-dollar second-place tickets that were sold in New York, California, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Texas.
More than 160 third-prize tickets were also sold including 27 that included the option Megaplier, which doubled the standard $10,000 prize.