Randy and Connie Leal accept their $10,000 Powerball prize from Kansas Lottery officials Thursday in Topeka. (Photo courtesy: Kansas Lottery)
(WIBW) - The first time proved lucky for rookie Powerball players Connie and Randy Leal of Burlington.
The couple visited Kansas Lottery headquarters in Topeka Thursday, bringing with them one of six tickets sold in Kansas that won $10,000 in Wednesday's Powerball drawing.
The Leal's ticket matched four of the first five numbers and the Powerball. Two tickets nationwide matched all of the numbers to share in the record $550 million jackpot. They were sold in Missouri and Arizona.
The Leals told Kansas Lottery officials they heard the hoopla surrounding the huge prize so, on a whim, purchased their first Powerball ticket ever - five plays for $10.
"As the numbers came up on television, I wrote them down to check against our ticket," Connie Leal told the lottery. "We were totally surprised when we saw how close we came to winning the jackpot!"
Connie said their win came at a good time, as money has been tight.
"We just closed on a house. Randy is undergoing kidney dialysis and just got a pacemaker," she said. "We've been struggling, and this money is going to help a lot."
The Leals purchased their lucky Powerball ticket at Kwik Shop 781, 4500 S. Topeka Blvd. in Topeka.
A Topekan who chose to remain anonymous also turned in a $10,000 ticket Thursday. It was purchased at Whitelakes 66, 931 SW 37th St. in Topeka.
Meantime, Missouri Lottery officials say the public will meet that state's big winner Friday.
Missouri's jackpot-winning ticket was sold at the T-Rex Mart, about 35 miles north of Kansas City in Dearborn, Missouri. The ticket holder claimed the prize at lottery headquarters in Jefferson City late Friday afternoon.