By Cheval John
The Kansas City Royals had always found a way to win when everything looked bleak.
They rallied to win the Wild Card playoff game against the Oakland Athletics.
They swept their way into the World Series.
They battled their way to a Game 7 against the San Francisco Giants with history seemingly on their side (home team have won Game 7s since 1980 9-0).
However, it was not meant to be as the Royals ran into a buzz saw in Madison Bumgarner and lost 3-2.
It really was not a question of if Bumgarner was going to pitch in the game, but when.
The key factor was that the Giants had to score enough runs to give Bumgarner the opportunity to pitch a masterpiece.
Tim Hudson, who became the oldest pitcher ever to start a World Series game, only lasted 1 2/3 innings that was the catalyst in the Royals tying the game at 2.
The Giants did not panic because of a spectacular play by Joe Panik that prevented the Royals from breaking the game wide open in the bottom of the third.
With a runner on first and no outs, Eric Osmet hit a sharp grounder to right field that seemed to be a base hit.
However, Panik made a diving stop, had the presence of mind to flip the ball out of the glove to short stop Brandon Crawford, who stepped on the bag and then tried to throw out Osmet, who seemingly beat the throw.
But Giants’ manager Bruce Bochy challenged the call and the replay official confirmed that Osmet was out and as a result, the call was overturn.
That huge call changed everything as the Giants took the lead 3-2 in the top of the fifth inning on a RBI single by Michael Morse.
From there, Bumgarner entered the game in relief and that was when a person sensed that the end was near for the Royals.
Bumgarner retired 11 of the 12 batters and was one out away from the greatest clutch performance ever before the Royals made things very interesting.
With two outs in the ninth inning, Alex Gordon hit a single to left field and the ball got away from Gregor Blanco that allowed Gordon to reach third.
Kansas City could not tie the game as Salvador Perez hit a fly ball in foul territory that allowed Pablo Sandoval to catch it for the final out and gave the Giants their third World Series Championship in five years.
The Giants have showed their team unity and persistent spirit despite facing the odds in winning a Game 7 of the World Series.
If it was not for Bumgarner’s dominant performance in the World Series, the Royals would have won it for the second time in their history.
By Cheval John
Nobody expected the Washington Redskins to beat the Dallas Cowboys.
With all the turmoil that the Redskins were going through with the injury of Robert Griffith III, a.k.a. and the benching of Kurt Cousins, this was suppose to have been an easy victory for the Cowboys.
Even all the experts on Monday Night Countdown chose the Cowboys to win this game.
I also chose the Cowboys to win, even thought I am a San Francisco 49er fan.
The Cowboys was on a 6-game winning streak and it looked like it should have been their seventh consecutive win.
Well, the Redskins proved everyone wrong and shocked the Cowboys in overtime 20-17 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Colt McCoy, who started the game for Washington, did everything right to keep his team in the matchup.
He did not make too many mistakes and managed the game.
McCoy went 25 of 30 for 299 yards and one interception.
When it counted, McCoy came through in the clutch.
On a 3rd and 3 in overtime, McCoy was flushed out of the pocket and he kept the play alive and found Jordan Reed, who made a one-handed catch and kept his feet inbounds for the crucial first down.
A couple plays later, Kai Forbath kicked a go-ahead 40-yard field goal to give Washington a 20-17 lead.
Needing a touchdown to win, the Cowboys had to play four downs to tried to get out of their own end of the field.
After a few plays that did not benefit Dallas, they tried to keep their drive alive on fourth and 3.
However, the Washington defense forced quarterback Tony Romo to throw an incomplete pass that secured the win and sent the Washington bench in a frenzy.
We should not have underestimated Washington in this game since the Cowboys are their rivals.
Also, with McCoy starting the game in his home state, that should have been a huge sign that Washington was going to win and the fact that his family was there to support him.
This tweet by freelance writer Corey Roepken explains it all.
— Corey Roepken (@RipSports) October 28, 2014
By Cheval John
Madison Bumgarner’s pitching dominance led the San Francisco Giants to a 5-0 victory against the Kansas City Royals to take a 3-2 lead.
Bumgarner had 8 strikeouts in the game and improved his Earned Run Average (ERA) to 0.29, which is the lowest in World Series history.
He became the second pitcher to throw a shutout in a World Series game.
The last pitcher to do so, St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jack Sanford in the second game of the 1962 World Series against the mighty New York Yankees.
Bumgarner’s World Series record has improved to 4-0.
Even if the Giants had lost the night before, this series would have gone back to Kansas City because of the pitching dominance of Bumgarner.
It does not hurt that he can hit too.
Video courtesy of Major League Baseball (MLB)
Courtesy: Paul Ridings, Jr., SHSU Sports Information
HUNTSVILLE – Jared Johnson passed for 277 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 86 more to lead Sam Houston State to a 38-21 Southland Conference victory over Abilene Christian Saturday at Elliott T. Bowers Stadium.
Running back Keshawn Hill added 47 yards on the ground with touchdown runs of 4 and 1 yards. Johnson, who completed 26 of 34 passes, hit Gerald Thomas for a 34-yard scoring pass.
The Bearkat defense accounted for 14 points as Eric Agbaroji returned an interception 28 yards for a touchdown and A. J. Davis picked up a fumble and ran into the end zone for a 27-yard tally.
Abilene Christian had not lost a fumble to an opponent in the first eight games this year. The Bearkats forced four Wildcat fumbles and recovered three.
ACU quarterback Parker McKenzie completed 29 of 44 passes for 385 yards. He threw TD passes of 64 yards to Noah Cheshier and 14 to Jonathan Epps.
Sam Houston (4-4 Southland 3-1) and Abilene Christian (4-5 Southland 2-3) combined for 897 yards total offense in the contest with the Bearkats holding a slim 452-445 edge.
Davis led the Bearkat defense with seven tackles including one of Sam Houston’s five quarterback sacks.
Sam Houston opened the game driving 75 yards in 10 plays that ended with Hill scoring on a 4-yard run just 2:34 seconds into the game. A 25-yard pass from Johnson to LaDarius Brown to the ACU seven set up the touchdown.
Luc Swimberghe extended the Kats’ lead to 10-3 with 10:07 remaining in the second quarter with a 20-yard field goal.
Eric Agbarogi picked off a Wildcat pass on the sideline and returned the interception 28 yards to give Sam Houston a 17-0 lead with 10 to play before intermission.
Abilene Christian answered with a 7-play, 64-yard scoring drive with De’Andre Brown scoring from the five-yard line at the 6:21 mark.
A minute-a-half later, quarterback Parker McKenzie hit Noah Cheshier down the left sideline for a 64-yard scoring pass to cut the Bearkat margin to 17-14 with 4:08 left in the half.
Sam Houston countered with an 8-play, 86-yard drive as Hill scored from the one with 1:34 in the half as the Kats took a 24-14 margin into the locker room at halftime.
A quarterback sack by P. J. Hall at the ACU 24-yard line resulted in the Wildcats’ first lost fumble of the 2014 season. A. J. Davis picked up the loose ball and dashed 27 yards for a touchdown with 3:54 remaining in the third.
Johnson hit Gerald Thomas for a 34-yard touchdown pass with 4:38 remaining to complete a 61-yard drive. McKenzie took the Wildcats on 8-play, 74-yard scoring drive, hitting Jonathan Epps for a 14-yard score with 2:08 left in the game.
Sam Houston and Stephen F. Austin meet in the 89th “Battle of the Piney Woods” next Saturday at 3 p.m. at NRG Stadium in Houston.
By Cheval John
When a person’s name is called to go into a game, they must go in with the mentality that they will make a difference for the team.
That is exactly what Marco Pappa did by scoring two goals in the Seattle Sounders’ 2-0 win against the Los Angeles Galaxy to capture their first ever MLS Supporter’s Shield.
Both teams came into the final game of the regular season tied with 61 points even though the Sounders had two more wins than the Galaxy.
The Galaxy needed to win this matchup in order to secure their fifth Supporter’s Shield, which would have been a record.
The Sounders only needed a draw or a win to secure the regular season title and home field advantage in the playoffs.
That set up an intriguing game at CenturyLink Field, where the atmosphere of 57,673 thousand screaming fans made it felt like an English Premier League contest.
Both teams played intense as they were fouls committed all over the place and a total of six yellow cards issued in the match.
The Sounders did not registered a shot in the first half and were looking to get on the board.
Then Sounders’ coach Sigi Schimd decided to bring in Pappa at the 73rd minute to replace Brad Edwards that changed the course of the game.
Pappa came through in the clutch in the 85th minute when he received a pass from Obafemi Martins in the box and buried the go-ahead goal in the net that sent the crowd into a frenzy.
His second goal that secured the win, came in stoppage time when he took away the ball from goal keeper Jaime Penedo and chipped it over a defender into the net.
Despite the proven star power of Clint Dempsey and Galaxy’s Landon Donovan that brought viewers to watch this important game on NBC, Pappa stole the show and lifted the Sounders to their first ever Community Shield title.
Did you think the game lived up to the hype? Leave your comment below.
Videos courtesy of Major League Soccer