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SportsCentre Year in Review: Ravens win the Super Bowl

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Mike Hetherington, TSN.ca
12/21/2013 12:01:05 PM
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Leading up to SportsCentre's Year In Review on Christmas Eve, TSN and TSN.ca look back at each of the Top 10 stories of 2013.

Today, we look back at a memorable Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans.

Super Bowl XLVII featured a solid matchup between the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers.

The Ravens seemed to be a team of destiny heading into the game. Linebacker Ray Lewis announced prior to the playoffs that he would retire. The Ravens defeated the AFC's top-seeded Denver Broncos in double overtime after quarterback Joe Flacco completed a miracle pass to receiver Jacoby Jones for a 70-yard touchdown in the final minute of regulation. The Ravens then defeated the New England Patriots, who had eliminated them in the same AFC Championship game the previous year, to punch their ticket to the Super Bowl.

The 49ers experienced their fair share of drama during the season as well. With a record of 8-2-1, head coach Jim Harbaugh made the decision to bench consistent quarterback Alex Smith in favour of the explosive dual-threat quarterback Colin Kaepernick in Week 12. The decision paid off as the 49ers finished the regular season 11-4-1, securing the NFC's second seed. Led by Kaepernick, the 49ers dismantled the Green Bay Packers before defeating the Atlanta Falcons en route to the Super Bowl.

Though the 49ers entered as the favourite, the Super Bowl quickly seemed to be turning into a blowout. Down 21-6 at halftime, the 49ers were struggling.

On the opening kickoff of the second half, the Ravens, or more specifically Jones, seemed to deliver a knockout punch. Jones returned the kickoff 108 yards for a touchdown to extend the Ravens lead to 28-6. The 49ers were reeling; the Ravens had shut down their offence and the team had no answers. That is, until the lights went out. 

After a 35-minute delay due to a power outage in the stadium, the game resumed. The break seemed to recharge the struggling 49ers offence and they scored 17 third-quarter points and brought themselves back to within five of the Ravens.

Baltimore opened the fourth quarter with a field goal to expand the lead to eight points. But the 49ers responded quickly, marching 76 yards in under three minutes with Kaepernick scoring a touchdown on a 15-yard scramble. The 49ers attempted to tie the game with a two-point conversion but failed on the attempt.

The Ravens added another field goal, extending their lead to five and leaving the 49ers less than five minutes to score a touchdown and take the lead.

San Francisco moved the ball downfield with ease, advancing 73 yards in five plays to set up first and goal from the Ravens seven-yard line with two minutes remaining. Facing fourth and goal from the five-yard line, Kaepernick threw a fade to Michael Crabtree, who was engaged with cornerback Jimmy Smith. The ball sailed over Crabtree's outstretched hands and out of bounds. Jim Harbaugh begged for a flag but none flew.

The Ravens then surrendered a safety and ran out the clock on the ensuing kickoff to win the second Super Bowl in franchise history.

Flacco was named Super Bowl MVP and Lewis retired a champion. Though the game seemed to be headed for a rout, one of the more shocking and bizarre turns in NFL history allowed the 49ers to fall five yards short of a Super Bowl victory.

Joe Flacco (Photo: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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