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Henderson mother of 4 wins $100K in NFL contest

Paula Hotchkiss won $100,000 on Sunday, and she didn’t even know it.

The 52-year-old Henderson woman, a widowed mother of four, correctly picked six NFL games and the margins of victory to hit the jackpot on the Fox Bet Super 6 app.

While most people would have been biting their nails and pacing the floor during the last game, Hotchkiss was at a birthday party. She said she didn’t even know she had won until Fox representatives contacted her.

“I had not looked at it all day. I did not have a clue,” she said. “… I asked the guy three times on the phone: Is this for real?”

The free game is billed as a promotion to “win Terry’s money,” referring to Fox NFL analyst and Las Vegas Strip entertainer Terry Bradshaw. (The Fox Bet Super 6 app is free and does not involve actual gambling.)

Entrants have to pick not only the winners in six specific NFL games but also the margins of victory. Hotchkiss, a regular sports bettor, said she instinctively made her picks and had them locked in “in less than a minute.”

Her first five wins came on the Browns by 10 to 14 points over the Cowboys (they won by 11); the Vikings by seven to nine points over the Texans (they won by eight); the Saints by four to six points over the Lions (they won by six); the Panthers by 10 to 14 points over the Cardinals (they won by 10); and the Seahawks by seven to nine points over the Dolphins (they won by eight).

All that remained was the Rams to win by seven to nine points over the Giants. While Hotchkiss enjoyed the party, the Rams took a 17-9 lead with 6:56 to play. The Giants drove deep into Rams territory, but quarterback Daniel Jones was picked off with 52 seconds remaining to preserve Los Angeles’ win.

Out of 419,000 entrants, only Hotchkiss called all six games correctly.

Then the Fox people started calling, she said. The birthday party ended up making the moment even more special, she said, because she got to celebrate with her children, a 33-year-old daughter and sons ages 26, 19 and 14.

She said she also thought of her husband, who died unexpectedly in 2015.

“I felt like that was him,” she said.

Hotchkiss, who works as a vision specialist at an optometrist’s office, said she plans to buy a new car and things for her children and sock the rest of the money away.

She has been on a bit of a media whirlwind after the win. She appeared on “Fox and Friends” on Fox News, and she said she is slated to appear in a segment with Bradshaw that probably will be aired before Sunday’s games.

“I still think it’s kind of surreal,” Hotchkiss said. “I’m still in shock. How did I do this?”

Contact Jim Barnes at jbarnes@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0277. Follow @JimBarnesLV on Twitter.

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