By Eric Thompson-Bey
The Baltimore Ravens overcame a power outage and a rally from the San Francisco 49ers to win Super Bowl XLVII 34-31.
Down 34-29 with less than 2 minutes to play, Colin Kaepernick’s pass on 4th and goal to Michael Crabtree landed just out of reach of his outstretched hands. Crabtree appeared to be held on the play, but no call was made by the officials and the Ravens held on.
The goal-line stand was a fitting end to the career of linebacker Ray Lewis, who announced in December that he would retire after the playoffs.
After a strong first half by Baltimore, the game seemed to turn after a 34-minute delay due to a power outage in the Superdome. Before the outage Baltimore led 28-6. When play continued after the delay the momentum had changed to the San Francisco side.
San Francisco scored 17 unanswered points in a little over 4 and half minutes to make the score 28-23. After the delay, San Francisco outgained Baltimore by 134 yards, including an 87-yard rushing advantage.
With 12:54 left in the 4th quarter Baltimore added a 19-yard field goal to make the score 31-23. But San Francisco wasn’t done yet. With 9:57 left in the game Kaepernick ran it in from 15-yards out for his second touchdown of the game. After the two-point conversion failed, San Francisco trailed 31-29.
Baltimore then kicked a 38-yard field goal with 4:19 left in the game, setting San Francisco up with one last chance to continue their unbeaten streak in Super Bowls.
San Francisco marched down the field and had a first and goal at the Baltimore 7-yard line. The 49ers failed to reach the endzone on three straight plays, setting up Kaepernick’s failed 4th down pass.
Baltimore used a strong first half performance from Joe Flacco to gain an early lead. Flacco ended the night with 287 yards and 3 touchdowns and no interceptions to earn to earn MVP honors.
Baltimore took the lead on their first possession when Anquan Boldin caught a 13-yard pass from Flacco. San Francisco added a 36-yard field goal in the quarter to make the score 7-3.
The second quarter was all Baltimore. Flacco threw for two more scores, including a one yard pass to Dennis Pitta and a 56-yard pass to Jacoby Jones to make the score 21-3. David Akers kicked a 27-yard field goal for San Francisco as time expired in the first to make the score 21-6 at the half.
Baltimore kept the momentum going in the second half when Jones returned the opening kickoff 108-yards for the score, the longest kickoff return in Super Bowl history.