Couple Play Their Cards Right for $20,000 Lottery Win

Spades scratch-off carries top prize

A Baltimore City couple who enjoy playing Maryland Lottery scratch-offs have concentrated on winning with the $2 SpSpadesades scratch-off since they first spotted it in area stores.

Mission accomplished! The two arrived at Lottery headquarters in Baltimore bright and early on a Monday morning to claim the $20,000 top prize on the instant ticket.

“I’m still in shock,” said Renee Jones. “We were housebound all weekend with our ticket.” The 57-year-old and her husband, Thomas, are loyal Lottery players accustomed to scratch-off wins of $5 or $10. In fact, they have won small amounts so often they knew their ticket was a winner without taking it to a store clerk for verification.

Thomas began picking up the scratch-offs for the couple after Renee injured her leg. A lead worker in the warehouse of Crispy Bagel Company in Baltimore, she is on light duty while recuperating.

“I go to two or three different places,” said Thomas, a custodian for Baltimore City Public Schools. They tried the Spades scratch-off and enjoyed playing it so much it became their game of choice. On Saturday, the 52-year-old bought two tickets at three 7-Eleven stores for the couple to enjoy. Did they ever!

“I said, ‘Baby, you aren’t going to believe it,’ ” Thomas said after scratching off the tickets and revealing four spades worth $5,000 each on the last ticket. Her initial disbelief changed to happiness and relief. They will spend their winnings on bills and give a little extra to their five adult children and 10 grandchildren. “And, we’re going to keep on playing,” he said.

Their lucky ticket came from the 7-Eleven at 211 West 28th Street in Baltimore.