Danger! Masters fans heartbroken as Mattea Roach almost beats James Holzhauer but ‘screws up’ rare lead in shock moment.

DANGER! Star Mattea Roach almost beat James Holzhauer in the second game of Monday’s Masters semifinals – but he just couldn’t.

It was a shocking sight to see Mattea leading until Final Jeopardy and losing when they were the only ones wrong.

Fans and even Ken Jennings were outraged - he said Mattea was'in tears'


Fans and even Ken Jennings were outraged – he said Mattea was ‘in tears’Photo credit: ABC
Mattea almost beat James Holzhauer in Monday's second semi-final, but was able to snap him up in Final Jeopardy


Mattea almost beat James Holzhauer in Monday’s second semi-final, but was able to snap him up in Final JeopardyPhoto credit: ABC

Danger! Masters — the game show’s three-week elite special — is almost done with the final three episodes. The semi-finals started on Monday May 22nd.

After two weeks of unmissable quarterfinals, Andrew He, Matt Amodio, Mattea Roach and self-proclaimed game show villain James Holzhauer emerged as the top four titans.

Unfortunately, popular fan favorite Sam Buttrey and 40-time winner Amy Schneider were eliminated as the two weakest players who just couldn’t make it in the quarterfinals.

In the first bout of Monday’s hour-long semifinals, James narrowly beat Matt and Andrew – the latter kindly bringing up his high school Spanish teacher to the audience.

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James Holzhauer fights back in Jeopardy! towards an “unusual” bottom. Masters semifinals

But in the second match of the night, James faced Mattea and Andrew – things weren’t that clear and dry either.


While James was third in Match 1, he turned the tables in the Double Jeopardy Round – Match 2 was different.

Mattea put on his game face and grabbed the first daily double in the second round, then they grabbed the last remaining one for 8000 points and suddenly had a huge lead.

At Final Jeopardy, Mattea maintained that lead with 26,800 points and James with 18,800 points, while Andrew had 6,400 points.

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Even Ken had to point out that the villainous James was “a full 8000” behind Mattea, who was “bursting into tears”.

“Ohhhhh sh**,” tweeted one fan.

“Check out how Mattea makes this game interesting!” wrote another.

“Mattea outperforms James. Those daily doubles are always important,” wrote a third.


“Final Jeopardy” was in the Historical Ships category, and James stretched out as if he’d finished writing early.

James knew it was “Golden Hind” but Mattea didn’t know and lost the game by a stake of 10,801 points.

Fans were devastated when the 24-year-old Canadian author and podcaster finished fourth in the quarterfinals, with many people wishing for an angry W for them.

“Wow… what an ending to Jeopardy Masters… Mattea nailed it,” lamented another on Twitter.

“Mattea was strong tonight! It’s a shame they couldn’t keep the win with the FJ, but they still played a great game today.”

“Well that was pretty disappointing,” wrote another, “damn.”

“Death taxes and James,” another wrote, and a sixth, “awwww.”

However, with a match point for second place, Mattea is poised to place in the finals and if so, be back for next year’s Masters as well.


As host Ken Jennings, 48, explained on stage, the semi-final means the scores of the four players on their podium finishes will be reset – so all bets will be void.

Three “match points” go to the winner of a game, one to the runner-up.

The two semi-final episodes will see one player eliminated per game and all four combinations will face off before another player is eliminated.

Then on Wednesday in the final there are two games with the three finalists and $500,000 as well as a “Trebek Trophy” as a reward.

Danger! The brainchild of new Executive Producer Michael Davies, Masters will be the first champion-chosen tournament since 2020’s $1M GOAT tournament.

The schedule is as follows:

  • Wednesday, May 17: The last two quarter-final games
  • Monday 22 May: 2 semi-final matches
  • Tuesday 23rd May: 2 semi-finals with another champion eliminated
  • Wednesday 24 May: 2 finals
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The competition with the highest ratings will be held annually and will be one belt higher than the Tournament of Champions (which only includes competitors from the previous season).

James won all but one of his quarterfinals, making him the clear leader.



Mattea “surpassed James,” but it took the self-proclaimed villain a while, like he’d finished writing “Final” prematurelyPhoto credit: ABC
The fans were devastated because Mattea was so close to a surprise


The fans were devastated because Mattea was so close to a surprisePhoto credit: ABC
James won both Masters semifinals on Monday, but neither was a breakaway - the finals will be decided after tomorrow's remaining semifinals


James won both Masters semifinals on Monday, but neither was a breakaway – the finals will be decided after tomorrow’s semifinalsPhoto credit: ABC


CELINE CASTRONUOVO is a Dailynationtoday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. CELINE CASTRONUOVO joined Dailynationtoday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: celine@dailynationtoday.com.

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