Cobb buys Powerball tickets in hopes of winning $403 million jackpot (Marietta Daily Journal)


Joe DeMaio, math professor at Kennesaw State University, gives odds on winning the Powerball

MARIETTA, Ga. (Feb 22, 2017) — Marietta resident Celia Lucero said she would move back home to Durango, Mexico, and donate to cancer research organizations if she wins the Powerball jackpot tonight.

“I need money,” said Lucero, who was diagnosed with cancer in June 2016 and is still undergoing treatment.

The Powerball jackpot totals $403 million with a cash value of $243.9 million ahead of tonight’s drawing.

Lucero, a Wal-Mart employee, said she is buying her Powerball ticket with her video gambling machine winnings at the Texaco convenience store located at the corner of Roswell Road and Fairground Street.

Convenience store clerks are expecting to sell more Powerball tickets today up until tonight’s drawing, scheduled for 11 p.m. on Channel 2.

Madison Montgomery, an assistant manager at a QuikTrip, said the store is expecting to sell $500 worth of lottery tickets from 1 to 11 p.m. today. The morning shift is expecting to sell about $400, she said.

“(People) see $400 million, and say, ‘I want that,’” said Montgomery, who works at the QuikTrip located at the corner of Fairground Street and South Marietta Parkway.

The QuikTrip location averages about $900 a day when there is a large jackpot, she said.

People daydreaming about winning the jackpot should not get their hopes up too high, however. Players have less than a 1-in-a-292 million chance of winning the big prize if they buy one ticket, according to Powerball.

“That’s pretty scarce,” said Joe DeMaio, math professor at Kennesaw State University, especially considering about 318 million people live in the United States.

In fact, DeMaio said ticket purchasers are 51 times more likely to die of a lightning strike and 34 times more likely to be attacked by a shark in Florida than the likelihood of winning the $403 million jackpot.

No matter the odds, people are buying tickets, said Harsh Solanki, manager at the Chevron at the corner of Cobb Parkway and Freys Gin Road.

Someone bought a winning Mega Millions ticket worth $82 million at the Chevron location in November, Solanki said. He said he hopes the store sells a winning Powerball ticket this time.

“It’ll solve someone’s problems,” he said.

Solanki said his store does not profit from winning tickets sold at the store.

Powerball prizes are determined by how many of a ticket’s six numbers match the numbers set to be drawn tonight at 11 p.m. on Channel 2.

Proceeds from Georgia Lottery games benefit public education in the state, including the HOPE Scholarship and pre-K programs.


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit