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'I didn’t even play tonight' | NC woman shocked to discover she won $2 million lottery jackpot

Elizabeth Johnson actually missed the 9:57 p.m. cutoff to buy a ticket by one minute. Her bad luck turned into good luck on Saturday.
Credit: NC Lottery

WILSON COUNTY, N.C. — A North Carolina woman who bought her Powerball ticket too late for last Wednesday’s drawing realized she qualified in plenty of time to win $2 million in Saturday's drawing.  

Elizabeth Johnson's lucky twist of fate started last Wednesday when, at the end of a busy day, she rushed to get her numbers into that night’s Powerball drawing.

Or at least, she thought she had. As fate would have it, she actually missed the 9:57 p.m. cutoff to buy a ticket using Online Play by one minute. Her bad luck turned into good luck on Saturday because her Quick Pick ticket was good for that drawing.

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“It was definitely a shock!” Johnson said. “When I got the message saying that I had won I thought, ‘Well, I didn’t even play tonight.’”

Her lucky $3 Power Play ticket matched the numbers on all five white balls to win $1 million in Saturday’s drawing. Johnson’s prize doubled to $2 million when the 2X multiplier was drawn. The odds of matching all five white balls are 1 in 11.6 million.

Johnson, who works as an interpreter, claimed her prize Thursday at lottery headquarters in Raleigh and took home $1,415,001 after required federal and state tax withholdings. She said she’ll buy a house and go on vacation with her big win.

“The kids want to go to Disneyland,” Johnson said. “We’ve never been and now we’ll get to.”

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