Western Man Wins $66,000 Playing Nebraska Pick 5

Larry Kotas of Western won $66,000 playing Nebraska Pick 5 from the Nebraska Lottery.

Kotas purchased his winning ticket from Hwy 41 Express Stop at 1200 Road 24 in Milligan. The winning ticket contained four plays including one with the winning numbers 07, 08, 14, 16 and 20 from the February 7 drawing.

Kotas said he has been playing the same sets of numbers on every drawing for the last 13 and a half years, ever since his first granddaughter was born. Some are based on his grand daughter’s birth date, some on her birth weight, some are numbers associated with her birth, he said.

“I guess I’ll have to change them,” he said. “I don’t even know what the odds are of winning on the same numbers twice, this was pure luck.”

Kotas said he called the Nebraska Lottery hotline at 5:30 a.m. on Friday morning to check the numbers and discovered he’d won. He drove over to Hwy 41 Express Stop in Milligan to tell them he’d won, but they already heard they’d sold a winner, he said, and friends who knew he’s a regular player started calling him to find out if he’d won the jackpot.

“This is something I thought would never happen,” Kotas said. “It’s really a blessing.”

Nebraska Pick 5 is Nebraska’s unique Lottery game: all the proceeds from Nebraska Pick 5 stay in Nebraska, and all the winning tickets are sold in Nebraska at Nebraska Lottery Lotto game retailers. The odds of winning the Nebraska Pick 5 jackpot, which starts at $50,000 and grows by $4,000 each drawing that is not won, are 1 in 501,942 while the overall odds of winning a prize in the game, which has drawings seven nights a week, are 1 in 8.

The mission of the Nebraska Lottery is to generate proceeds for good causes while providing quality entertainment options to Nebraskans. Over $717 million has been raised for the Nebraska Lottery’s beneficiary funds since the Lottery began in 1993. All 93 counties in Nebraska have benefited from projects funded with these Nebraska Lottery proceeds.

Published on 02/08/2019