BATON ROUGE, LA — Mary Roberts of Boyce became the Louisiana Lottery’s first millionaire of 2012 when she claimed a $1 million Powerball prize from the Feb. 11 drawing at Lottery headquarters on Tuesday, accompanied by her husband, Mike. The win also marks the first $1 million “match-5” prize for the Louisiana Lottery since the Powerball game changed in January.
“I came home from the grocery store and found Mike at the computer shaking,” said Roberts, “Then I saw that he was checking the winning numbers on the Lottery’s website. We couldn’t believe it!”
Regular Powerball and Lotto players, the Roberts have always used their kids’ birthdays to choose their numbers, but the couple opted for a Quick Pick ticket for the Feb. 11 drawing, meaning the numbers were randomly generated by the Lottery’s system.
The winning ticket matched all five white ball numbers, but missed the red Powerball number, to win $1 million. The Boyce couple received $700,000 after state and federal taxes were withheld. The winning numbers were 01-10-37-52-57 and the Powerball number was 11.
Mike Roberts said his first order of business is to purchase his wife her dream car, a Mustang convertible. The self-proclaimed “ordinary” couple said they plan to use their winnings to move closer to their children in Shreveport.
The couple purchased the winning ticket at Super 1 Foods #601 on MacArthur Drive in Alexandria. The store will receive a bonus of $10,000, which is 1 percent of the prize, for selling the Roberts’ their winning ticket.
The Powerball game underwent several enhancements last month to create bigger jackpots, more millionaires and better odds of winning. In addition to a price increase to $2 per play, the game’s “match-5” prize quadrupled from $200,000 to $1 million.
Ticket purchasers must be at least 21 years of age. The Lottery encourages anyone who may have a gambling problem or friends and family of anyone with a gambling problem to call toll free 1-877-770-7867 for help.
For security purposes, the Lottery strongly encourages players to sign the back of their tickets immediately after purchasing. More information about Powerball and other Louisiana winners can be found on the Lottery’s website, www.louisianalottery.com .