By MADDY VITALE
Sometimes you win. And sometimes you win big. For Ocean City resident Cris Pannullo, his reign on “Jeopardy!” continued Wednesday night when he cruised to another major victory.
Pannullo, a customer success operations manager, crushed his competition with his 18th straight win. His won $27,579 Wednesday night, bringing his grand total up to $637,923.
Heading into Final Jeopardy, it was all over for his opponents.
“Cris, you are leading with $28,800, a big lead again heading into Final Jeopardy,” “Jeopardy!” host Ken Jennings said of Pannullo’s usual big lead by Final Jeopardy.
Pannullo didn’t answer the final question correctly. His opponents did. But it didn’t matter. There was no way they could catch up to him.
A few times during the game, contestant Randall Rayford seemed to be closing in on Pannullo.
Ultimately, he was no match for the champ.
“Randall had a strong game and was cruising until Cris got a little more locked in on the buzzer,” Jennings said.
Here is his 15th win. Video credit “Jeopardy!”
At the end of the show, Jennings said of Pannullo’s wins, “Sometimes it’s close. Sometimes it’s not. But he just keeps winning.”
Jennings, the famous former contestant turned host, is the record holder for “Jeopardy!” wins with 74 in a row and $2,520,700 in winnings.
Pannullo ranks fifth of all time in wins on regular season shows.
With his stellar performances, and luck finding the Daily Doubles, he has earned his place in the 2023 Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions.
Key to Pannullo’s wins is his strategy to jump around to find Daily Doubles. The same tactic was employed by James Holzhauer, who won 32 games while earning $2.6 million in 2019.
Pannullo returns to Jeopardy on Thursday at 7 p.m. on Channel 6.
The champion will face challengers Rob Lamanna, a product manager from Whitby, Ontario Canada, and Jeri Zulli, an English professor from East Setauket, N.Y.
For more information, visit the official Jeopardy website at www.jeopardy.com