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Wheely big winner! Marine Parker wins ‘Wheel of Fortune’

He’s a word-game genius!: Marine Park’s Matthew Epstein won $16,500 on “Wheel of Fortune.” The episode aired on March 29.
Carol Kaelson / “Wheel of Fortune”

He spun — and won!

Marine Parker Matthew Epstein won a whopping $16,500 representing Brooklyn College on “Wheel of Fortune” on an episode that aired on March 29. Pat Sajak and crew taped the edition of “America’s Game” last month, but they put Epstein under a gag order until the show aired. Keeping his lips sealed about the win was definitely a challenge — especially because classmates and family members would badger Epstein to spill the beans — but the secret was worth keeping, because he got to see everyone’s faces when they found out, he said.

“It was incredibly difficult keeping it a secret, because I would have people asking me every day,” Epstein said. “But it would have ruined the surprise. It was incredibly exciting, we had a viewing party. Everybody was just screaming and going crazy.”

Epstein’s mom Robin Sherman-Epstein is incredibly proud of her son’s big win, and even more so that he said the alphabet backwards in less than five seconds during the show’s introduction — something Epstein has been doing since he was in preschool, she said.

“I noticed he showed off in the beginning,” she said. “That was terrific. I was like ‘Oh my god!’ ”

Epstein hasn’t decided what he will spend the money on — right now he’s balancing going buck wild and practicality.

“Definitely a few impulse buys, but not entirely sure yet,” Epstein said. “For the most part, I’m going to try to save it up, as lame as that sounds.”

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.

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