101ESPN Flashback Week has reached the end of the line, which means we’re in 2010-present day territory. Here are my favorite moments from our current decade.
Brouwer’s Game 7 goal vs. Chicago: The Blues had blown a 3-1 series lead against the Blackhawks in the 2016 playoffs, and Blues fans thought they were in for another playoff letdown. They had a 2-1 lead after a period, but Chicago tied it in the second. With tension high in the third, former Blackhawk Troy Brouwer scored at the 8:31 mark to put the Blues up 3-2. In section 121, all of us Blues fans jumped for joy. Brian Elliott and the Blues were able to preserve that lead, and eliminate the defending champion ‘Hawks in seven games.
49ers’ dominate first half vs. L.A. Rams: In their first game in L.A. after deserting St. Louis, Stan Kroenke, Kevin Demoff and Jeff Fisher’s Rams went to San Francisco for their opener. The Cardinals were hosting the Cubs that night, and I was there with my son. After the Cardinals lost, we hopped in the car with no intention of paying attention to the Rams. But we called my daughter, who was watching the football game in her college dorm, and she was laughing uproariously at the “dumpster fire” that was the Rams. I decided I had to watch, and turned on the TV when I got home to hear Herman Edwards say at halftime “that half set offensive football back 50 years.” The Rams had put up 62 yards on 31 plays, with a dozen of those plays going for zero or negative yards or turnovers. I was gleeful. It was a great moment. The Rams lost 28-0 to start a 4-12 season.
SLU win vs. VCU: On February 19 of 2013, just two months after the death of their head coach, Rick Majerus, Saint Louis University stamped themselves as a national power with an impressive 76-62 win over 24th ranked Virginia Commonwealth at Chaifetz Arena. The Rams had come in at 21-5, but SLU rolled to a big halftime lead and held them off. The Bills would go to the NCAA tournament for the second year in a row.
Mizzou moves to SEC: On July 1 of 2012, the Missouri athletic program departed the Big 12 conference to join the best football conference in America, the SEC. The finances and competition are much better in the SEC. That was a momentous day for the state school.
Henry Josey’s touchdown run against Texas A&M: On November 30, 2013, I was in San Francisco for the Rams/49ers game the next day, and Mizzou was on national TV, trying to clinch the SEC East title against Texas A&M in Columbia. The Tigers kept Johnny Manziel bottled up, and scored two third quarter touchdowns to take a 21-14 lead into the fourth quarter. A&M tied it early in the fourth, but with 3:34 left, Mizzou running back Henry Josey took off on a 57-yard scamper to put the Tigers up for good. Our party exploded at our Bay Area restaurant. The Tigers moved on to the SEC championship game where they lost to Auburn.
Adams HR vs. Kershaw. The Cardinals were up 2-1 in the 2014 NLDS against the Dodgers, but down 2-0 to Clayton Kershaw in the seventh when Matt Adams hit a shocking 3-run homer to provide the winning margin in a series clinching 3-2 victory. It was a great feeling for Cardinal fans, but they couldn’t get back to the World Series for the second year in a row, losing to the Giants in the NLCS.
All great, but I think this decade’s favorite moment will be unanimous among St. Louis fans….
Freese Game 6 HR vs. Texas. This one is self-explanatory. The Rangers were a strike away from beating the Cardinals in the World Series on two different occasions, in the 9th inning and in the 10th. Both times big hits tied the game. Freese led off the bottom of the eleventh with that homer to center against Mark Lowe. We’ll see you, tomorrow night.
These opinions are my own. It’s amazing being a STL sports fan. Hope you’ve enjoyed Flashback Week.