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Mega Millions jackpot: South Carolina ticket wins $1.573 billion, just shy of national record

Numbers drawn for record $1.6 billion Mega Millions jackpot
Posted at 11:01 PM, Oct 23, 2018

The South Carolina Education Lottery reported on its website early Wednesday morning that one winning ticket was sold in its state.

Mega Millions announced the win in a statement early Wednesday.

"The moment we've been waiting for finally arrived, and we couldn't be more excited," said Gordon Medenica, lead director of the Mega Millions Group and Director of Maryland Lottery and Gaming. "This is truly a historic occasion. We're so happy for the winner, and we know the South Carolina Education Lottery can't wait to meet the lucky ticket holder."

The Mega Millions jackpot on Tuesday reached $1.573 billion, the game's largest-ever grand prize but not quite the nation's biggest prize of all time. A Powerball prize in 2016 was for $1.586 billion. 

The winning numbers on Tuesday were:

28-70-5-62-65 and the Mega Ball was 5.

Had a winning ticket not been sold on Tuesday, Friday's jackpot would have reached $2 billion. 

Winning Tuesday's entire jackpot means either taking the $1.6 billion winnings in annuity payments spread over 29 years, or taking the lump sum of $913 million. 


RELATED: Are you REALLY ready to win the Powerball or MegaMillionsjackpots?

Only one other jackpot in U.S. history has surpassed the $1 billion mark. That jackpot was via the Powerball lottery on Jan. 13, 2016, and that drawing was worth $1.586 billion. In that instance, three winners split the massive jackpot. 

The Mega Millions jackpot has been building since July 27 when a winning ticket was sold in California. 

Mega Millions is played in every state except Hawaii, Alaska, Nevada, Utah, Mississippi and Alabama. The odds of drawing all six numbers in Mega Millions are 1 in nearly 302 million. 

Participants in the lottery pick six numbers from two separate pools of numbers - five different numbers from Nos. 1 to 70 and one number (for the Mega Ball) from Nos. 1 to 25.

Although you likely did not draw every single number, you could still be a winner. Selecting the Mega Ball is worth $2. If you get all five white numbers correct without hitting the Mega Ball, a ticket is worth $1 million.

Here is a breakdown of all the Mega Millions prizes:

  • All five numbers and the Mega Ball: Jackpot
  • All five white numbers without the Mega Ball: $1 million
  • Four white numbers plus the Mega Ball: $10,000
  • Four white numbers: $500
  • Three white numbers plus the Mega Ball: $200
  • Three white numbers: $10
  • Two white numbers plus the Mega Ball: $10
  • One white number plus the Mega Ball: $4
  • Match the Mega Ball: $2

Mega Millions is not the only lottery out there that carries a large jackpot. Powerball's jackpot on Wednesday is the sixth-most in US history at an estimated $620 million.

Take a look at the list below for the largest jackpots in U.S. history, according to the Arizona Lottery:

Rank Amount Date Lottery
1 $1.6 billion (estimated) 10/23/18

Mega Millions

2 $1.586 billion 1/13/16


3 $758.7 million 8/23/17 Powerball
4 $656 million 3/30/12

Mega Millions

5 $648 million 12/17/13

Mega Millions


$620 million (estimated) 10/24/18


7 $590.5 million 5/18/13


8 $587.5 million 11/28/12


9 $564.1 million 2/11/15



$559.7 million



Justin Boggs is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @jjboggs or on Facebook.