Raven beat Denver in second OT, Kaepernick runs over Green Bay
The Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers were the first two teams to advance to the NFL’s Final Four.
In Saturday’s division round opener, Baltimore got a miracle 70-yard touchdown pass from Joe Flacco to Jacoby Jones with 32 seconds left to force overtime and the won it at 1:42 of the second OT on a 47-yard Justin Tucker field goal. There was something for everyone in this one. 5’5″ Trindon Holliday opened the scoring with a 90-yard punt return. He would run the second half kickoff back 104 yards for a score as well. Peyton Manning was 28-43 for 290 yards and three touchdown but also threw two key picks. One was returned 39 yards for a touchdown by Corey Graham and the other in overtime set up Baltimore’s winning field goal. Ray Rice pounded Denver for 131 yards on 30 carries as Ray Lewis and the Ravens live to dance again.
In San Francisco, it was all Colin Kaepernick as the rookie out of Nevada had the best statistical game in NFL history ….. rushing for 181 yards and throwing for another 263. It didn’t start out well for Kaepernicjk who threw a 52-yard pick six to Sam Shields on the second play of the game but that was really it for the Packers. The 49ers rolled to 579 yards of total offense, 323 of it on the ground, while holding the ball for 38 minutes. Even trailing by just three points at the half, Green Bay was never really effectively in the game. A Packer touchdown in the final minute was window dressing on 1 45-31 defeat that was nowhere near as close as the final score.
Seahawks/Falcons and Texans/Pats complete Final Four today
Brian Blessng and our friends at Bookmaker analyze Sunday’s NFL playoff games
NC State kocks off Duke, Michigan is now lone unbeaten
In Saturday college basketball action, No.1 Duke was knocked from the ranks of the unbeaten with by an 84-76 loss at No.20 North Carolina State. The Wolfpack went practically wire-t-wire in the game and put down every second-half Blue Devil charge. CJ Leslie had 25 points for NC State while Richard Howell chipped in with 16 points and grabbed 18 boards. Seth Curry had 22 for teh Dukies but missed the final minutes with an ankle injury.
Duke’s loss left the No.2-ranked Michigan Wolverines as the nation’s lone college basketball unbeaten at 16-0. The Wolverines will have their hands full today in Columbus when they meet the 12-3 and No.15-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes. Michigan will be a 1 1/2 point dog (14) in the game that tips at 1:30 PM EST and can be seen on CBS.
NBA News and Notes
Saturday night NBA was highlighted by the return of John Wall to the Washington Wizards. The former Kentucky Wildcat scored 14 points and dished out 4 assists as the Wiz beat Atlanta 93-83. Wall had missed the first 33 games of the year recovering from knee surgery. It marked 6-28 Washington’s first back-to-back wins of the season.
The Orlando Magic snapped a 10-game losing streak with a 104-101 win over the Clippers as Aaron Affalo went off for 30 points. The Magic used a 29-18 fourth quarter to also snap a Clipper franchise record best 13-game home win streak. JJ Redick had 21 points off the bench for the winners while Nicola Vucevic added 15 boards. Blake Griffin had a 30-8-7 game line of the Clippers.
Mario Chamlers had career highs in points (34) and three-pointers (10) in the Miami Heat’s 128-99 blowout win over the Sacramento Kings. Miami led 28-17 at the quarter and 66-44 at the half before going on cruise control. Miami shot 56% from the field in the game in a much needed win. The Heat snapped a two-game losing streak and are just 5-8 since December 26th.
The Lockout is over as camps open on Sunday
With the new CBA now ratified by the league and the players, it’s time to get down to playing hockey. Camps open today and the abbreviated 48-game schedule starts Saturday with 26 of the 30 teams in action. In all, 720 games will be played over a 99-day regular season. There will be at least one game on each day of the season, which will end on April 27. The playoffs will begin on April 30. The latest the Stanley Cup finals will end is June 28.
The trade deadline will be April 3, and free agency will open July 5.
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