Thursday, June 17, 2010

My Top 5 Live Sports Moments

Idea respectfully stolen from Phil over at Black and Blue and Gold.

Starting from the bottom...

#5 - December 17, 2006 - Bills shut out Miami, 21-0 
It was a cold and drizzly December afternoon, a game in which my stupid ex had worn flip flops to.  The Bills were still mathematically in the hunt for a playoff spot and responded by pounding the woeful dolphins.  J.P. Losman had touchdown passes to Robert Royal, Josh Reed, and Lee Evans, and the game was never close.  I remember Cleo Lemon drove the Dolphins inside the Bills' ten yard line with the seconds ticking off.  The partially full stadium erupted with a roaring cacophony, looking for their shutout.  Aaron Schobel responded in kind batting down a pass attempt that was the final play of the game.

#4 - December 2, 2005 - Clarkson Women Upset #1 Ranked St. Lawrence at Home, 2-0
The game that set the attendance record for Women's hockey at Clarkson with 1,946.  St. Lawrence was the top ranked team in the country at the time, and Clarkson was a solid, but still very new division one program.  They also had Kira Hurley in net, the first ever member of the Lady Golden Knights to be named an All-American.  Over the course of the night Hurley put on a clinic as the Golden Knights were outshot 34-8 but still prevailed with the shutout victory.  In the dying seconds, when the Saints started getting chippy, yours truly enticed the crowd into a rousing chant of PMS!  PMS!  PMS!

Credit: Clarkson Athletics

#3 - March 19th, 2008 - Sabres Score Six Third Period Goals to Defeat Tampa Bay, 7-4
This was my third ever Sabres game and the second win I witnessed.  I attended with my friend Britt and we were sequestered in the top row of section 311.  With the score 4-1 in favor of the lightning heading into the third, things looked bleak, but Britt and I decided to cheer on the team by standing atop the concrete behind our seats.  And thus history was made as the Sabres ripped off goal after goal after goal and the Arena erupted.  Thomas Vanek had a hat trick and the horns were alive in the streets afterward.

#2 - April 6th, 2010 - Sabres Clinch Northeast Division by Beating the Rangers, 5-2
After having seen the Sabres clinch a playoff spot in person ten days earlier, I was hoping that this game would see the Sabres clinch the division.  It looked a little shaky at first, with the Sabres and Rangers trading goals to a 2-2 tie in the first.  But Tyler Ennis and company would not be denied as the Sabres ripped off three more, defeating the rangers to the delight of the HSBC crowd.  The crowd never stopped screaming in the final seconds, and in the last home game of the season, the Sabres got to salute their fans in the best way possible.

The Infamous Picture

#1 - April 15th, 2010 - Party in the Plaza, Sabres win Game 1 against Boston, 2-1
I live in Syracuse and I did not have off of work on this particular Thursday (though I did have the following Friday off).  Going to Buffalo involved getting everything ready the Wednesday before, and making absolutely sure I left on time at 4:15 and raced like a demon down I-90 to make the 7:00 start.  To avoid wasting time by having to change, I put my Sabres pajama pants (a fixture), jeans, underarmor and my Sabres shirts underneath my khakis and collared shirt.  I looked like the office dough boy.  When 4:15 rolled around, I dashed out of the building, to my car and onto the 90 racing towards the city I will call home.

I wasn't sure if I was making the right decision, knowing that I had playoff tickets on Saturday and would be returning home late Thursday only to do it all over again in 36 hours.  Still, I had heard great things about the throngs of Sabres fans that gather outside HSBC arena come playoff time to watch the games on the big screen and I had to see it for myself.  As soon as I set foot on Perry St. and approached my friends, I knew I was in the right place.

Just being there with Phil, Melissa, Mel, Tom, Jay, Beth, and Caroline amidst thousands of Sabres fans on a warm April night is a feeling I cannot begin to describe.  The crowd was a constant stream of noise and somehow got louder each time NBC cut to us screaming outside.  The weather was perfect, the atmosphere was incredible, and the Sabres won.  The streets around the arena were filled for hours after the game.  I remember sitting there just watching people celebrate for a long time after the game, sharing in their happiness.  I will never ever forget that night.

The Tent, and there were easily three times as many people behind us.

This was a solid hour after the game.

1 comment:

  1. Way to not include the domination we witnessed.