Sport | Other Sports

Ravens survive 49ers fightback to win Super Bowl

Baltimore scrape home 34-31 after leading 28-6 early in the third quarter

  • Reuters
  • Published: 08:21 February 4, 2013
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: AP
  • Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed (20) celebrates his team's 34-31 win against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL Super Bowl on Sunday.

New Orleans: The Baltimore Ravens survived a furious second-half rally by San Francisco and a momentum-sapping power outage at the Superdome to defeat the gritty 49ers 34-31 in the Super Bowl on Sunday.

A Super Bowl-record 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Jacoby Jones to open the second half gave the Ravens a 28-6 but the 49ers scored 17 straight points after a 35-minute power outage and nearly pulled off a stunning comeback.

"Both teams had to deal with it," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said of the power outage. "They dealt with it better, obviously. They were able to turn the momentum of the game."

Trailing 34-29, the 49ers marched down to the Ravens' seven but failed to score on four tries, surrendering the ball on downs at the five with less than two minutes remaining.

Baltimore used up the clock and on fourth down, punter Sam Koch ran out of bounds in the end zone for a safety with four seconds left.

Joe Flacco, the game's Most Valuable Player, completed 22 of 33 passes for 287 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions to lead the Ravens to their first title since the 2000 season.

"We don't make anything easy," said Flacco, who has guided the Ravens to the playoffs in each of his five NFL seasons. "It was a hard-fought game on both sides.

"We gave the country a pretty good game to watch. Not to our liking necessarily but that's the way it goes sometimes and that's the way we do things."

Baltimore's lead evaporated because the 49ers' talented second-year quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, suddenly found the form that made him one of the league's most dangerous quarterbacks this season.

Despite a shaky first half, Kaepernick completed 16 of 28 passes for 302 yards and a touchdown. He also ran for 62 yards and a 15-yard touchdown on seven carries to finish behind Frank Gore (110 yards) as the 49ers' second-leading ground gainer.

Kaepernick's rushing score with 2:57 left cut the Baltimore lead to 31-29 but his pass attempt on the two-point conversion attempt was incomplete.

A 38-yard field goal by Justin Tucker with 4:19 left in the game hiked the Ravens' lead to 34-29, setting the stage for what could have been a Super Bowl-record comeback by the 49ers.

But the Ravens' defence, anchored by retiring future Hall of Fame linebacker Ray Lewis, came up big when it had to with a goal-line stand and handed the 49ers' franchise its first Super Bowl loss after five victories.

Baltimore linebacker Terrell Suggs said it was the "ultimate cake" to allow Lewis to go out a winner.

"There will never be another leader like him and we sent him out like his brothers," he said. "His legacy will go untainted."

Ravens tight end Dennis Pitta, who caught four passes for 26 yards and a touchdown, said the power outage, which left half of the overheard lights in the Superdome out, "felt like an hour."

"We lost a lot of momentum and, credit to them, they came storming back and played tremendous. But this team continued to fight and never quit ... Didn't make it easy, but it was fun."

Lewis said his children will be his top priority in retirement.

"Daddy gets to come home now," he said. "I get to chase them. They aren't going to like me being home all the time. This is the most ultimate feeling ever.

"This is the way you do it. No other way to go out and end a career."

Super Bowl winners through history

Feb. 3, 2013 - Baltimore Ravens 34, San Francisco 49ers 31

Feb. 5, 2012 - New York Giants 21, New England 17

Feb. 6, 2011 - Green Bay 31, Pittsburgh 25

Feb. 7, 2010 - New Orleans 31, Indianapolis 17

Feb. 1, 2009 - Pittsburgh 27, Arizona 23

Feb. 3, 2008 - New York Giants 17, New England 14

Feb. 4, 2007 - Indianapolis 29, Chicago 17

Feb. 5, 2006 - Pittsburgh 21, Seattle 10

Feb. 6, 2005 - New England 24, Philadelphia 21

Feb. 1, 2004 - New England 32, Carolina 29

Jan. 26, 2003 - Tampa Bay 48, Oakland 21

Feb. 3, 2002 - New England 20, St. Louis 17

Jan. 28, 2001 - Baltimore 34, New York Giants 7

Jan. 30, 2000 - St. Louis 23, Tennessee 16

Jan. 31, 1999 - Denver 34, Atlanta 19

Jan. 25, 1998 - Denver 31, Green Bay 24

Jan. 26, 1997 - Green Bay 35, New England 21

Jan. 28, 1996 - Dallas 27, Pittsburgh 17

Jan. 29, 1995 - San Francisco 49, San Diego 26

Jan. 30, 1994 - Dallas 30, Buffalo 13

Jan. 31, 1993 - Dallas 52, Buffalo 17

Jan. 26, 1992 - Washington 37, Buffalo 24

Jan. 27, 1991 - New York Giants 20, Buffalo 19

Jan. 28, 1990 - San Francisco 55, Denver 10

Jan. 22, 1989 - San Francisco 20, Cincinnati 16

Jan. 31, 1988 - Washington 42, Denver 10

Jan. 25, 1987 - New York Giants 39, Denver 20

Jan. 26, 1986 - Chicago 46, New England 10

Jan. 20, 1985 - San Francisco 38, Miami 16

Jan. 22, 1984 - Los Angeles 38, Washington 9

Jan. 30, 1983 - Washington 27, Miami 17

Jan. 24, 1982 - San Francisco 26, Cincinnati 21

Jan. 25, 1981 - Oakland 27, Philadelphia 10

Jan. 20, 1980 - Pittsburgh 31, Los Angeles 19

Jan. 21, 1979 - Pittsburgh 35, Dallas 31

Jan. 15, 1978 - Dallas 27, Denver 10

Jan. 9, 1977 - Oakland 32, Minnesota 14

Jan. 18, 1976 - Pittsburgh 21, Dallas 17

Jan. 12, 1975 - Pittsburgh 16, Minnesota 6

Jan. 13, 1974 - Miami 24, Minnesota 7

Jan. 14, 1973 - Miami 14, Washington 7

Jan. 16, 1972 - Dallas 24, Miami 3

Jan. 17, 1971 - Baltimore 16, Dallas 13

Jan. 11, 1970 - Kansas City 23, Minnesota 7

Jan. 12, 1969 - New York Jets 16, Baltimore 7

Jan. 14, 1968 - Green Bay 33, Oakland 14

Jan. 15, 1967 - Green Bay 35, Kansas City 10

Gulf News