BY BOB HOLT
NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COMWe can say one thing about the new Mega Millions lottery rules, probably aimed at reaching higher jackpots: Mission accomplished.
No one was able to win the top prize in the Mega Millions drawing on Friday, so that pot is continuing its rise toward $200 million.
According to the Mega Millions web site, the annuity jackpot for the drawing of Tuesday, November 19 was an estimated $165 million, and you could have walked away with a cash option payout of $89 million. Since there were no Mega Millions winners with the numbers 14, 15, 29, 49, 63 and Mega ball 2, the jackpot increases to $181 million for Friday's drawing.
The winning Mega Millions numbers for Friday, November 15 were 25, 44, 49, 54, and 63. The Mega Ball was 8. USA Mega reported that one ticket from New York had the first five numbers correct without matching the Mega Ball to win $1 million.
Mega Millions changed its rules in October, raising the possibilities of the first five numbers from 1 to 75. Mega Millions has the U.S. annuity lottery jackpot record of $656 million, set in March 2012. According to philly.com, the game hasnâ€™t seen an annuity of $200 million since, while Powerball has had 10.
A lot of lottery players were hoping for a piece of that luck last week, when the date l 11/12/13 fell. It proved to be a fortunate for Sandra Castro of Texas, who claimed a $1,000,001 prize from a Mega Millions drawing of November 1 on that day.
The Mega Millions web site reported that Castro matched the first five numbers without getting the Mega Ball on one set of numbers on her ticket. Another set of numbers did the reverse, getting the Mega Ball right, but no other numbers.
Missed it by one line. If co-mingling the numbers was legal, Castro would have won $87 million.