SAN FRANCISCO—In a nail-biting game, the San Francisco 49ers win big at home against the Seattle Seahawks on December 8.
The 49ers (9-4) returned to Candlestick Park on Sunday afternoon to win 19-17 against the NFC Western Division leaders, the Seattle Seahawks (11-2). The third-straight victory by the 49ers was an added confidence boost by defeating their team rival now five times in a row.
In return, the Seattle Seahawks broke their seven-game winning streak and were denied their chance to clinch the Western Division.
The tense contention between the two teams was palpable with both teams playing a highly physical and aggressive game. “We all played together and made it happen…It felt like a heavy weight fight,” said 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree post-game.
The battle on the field resulted in a low scoring game, in which both teams’ equally tough defensive teams were able to shut down both star quarterbacks and their offenses. The two sophomore quarterbacks threw one touchdown and one interception each, and 49ers’ Colin Kaepernick completed 15 of 29 passes for a total of 175 yards compared to Seahawks’ Wilson throwing 199 yards and completing 15 of 25 passes.
Dawson of the 49ers was the game’s leading scorer, kicking four field goals and accounting for 12 of San Francisco’s 19 points. According to ESPN, Kicker Dawson is now a 49er franchise record holder by successfully kicking 20 consecutive field goals.
At the start of the second quarter, Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson, who is currently tied with Dan Roethlisberger for most wins in their first two seasons since 1970, gave the ball to Marshawn Lynch for an 11-yard rushing touchdown.
Seattle’s offense remained persistent and gave rookie Luke Wilson his first career touchdown with a 39-yard touchdown pass. San Francisco countered with a 27-yard catch by Anquan Boldin and an eight-yard touchdown pass caught by Vernon Davis seconds before the end of the first half. San Francisco led 16-14 at halftime.
Coaches and players alike were visibly upset in the second half as penalty flags flew against both teams. Late in the third, the crowd roared when a 15-yard taunting penalty was called against 49ers’ Donte Whitner. The call was neutralized moments later when referees flagged Seahawks’ Michael Robinson for grabbing a facemask.
The game brought nine penalty violations for the Seattle Seahawks and seven for the San Francisco 49ers. Seattle is ranked second behind Tampa Bay for receiving the most penalties in the NFL.
Special team’s player Golden Tate gave the Seahawks good field position with a 38-yard punt return with about nine minutes left in the fourth. However, the 49ers’ tight defense continued its season streak of denying any rusher more than 100 yards a game and forced the Seahawks to resort to a successful 31-yard field goal attempt by Steven Hauschka. Seahawks led 17-16.
San Francisco’s offense took hold of the game’s momentum with six minutes left to go in the game. Kaepernick strung together an 11-play, 76-yard drive with Frank Gore running the ball 51 yards inside the 20-yard mark. With 30 seconds left on the clock, Phil Dawson kicked the 49ers to a 19-17 victory.
In a press conference recap, 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh said the game “was a great team accomplishment” with all offense, defense and special teams playing well. “These games are only for the tough,” Harbaugh said.
Next, the 49ers go to Tampa Bay to play against the Buccaneers at 10 a.m. on December 15 for their Week 14 matchup.