You Want Memorable Sports Drama? Here Are My Top Moments That I Saw in Real Time

“Growing up or whatever, and you see stuff like that happen, those become memories.”
Cardinals third baseman David Freese

Thursday night’s World Series drama in Game 6 between the Texas Rangers and the St. Louis Cardinals made me think back through the sporting moments that remained etched in my memories. Here’s a somewhat-ranked list of the moments that – as a sports fan – feel fortunate to have been able to witness in real time.

I take into account my emotional investment at the beginning as opposed to when the play happened – it’s an ebb and flow baby. And while there are plenty of moments missing – Joe Carter, Miracle on Ice, etc. – I’m sad to say I never got to see them live or I remain bitter because my team was on the losing end – Hello Kirk Cousins Hail Mary last weekend.

So what are yours? Let me know in the comments.

No. 15

Super Bowl XXIII

  • Trailing 16-13, Joe Montana drives San Francisco 92 yards in just under three minutes to score the winning touchdown on a pass to John Taylor.

No. 14

Milwaukee Brewers versus Baltimore Orioles, April 15, 1987

  • Juan Nieves’ pitches the franchises first – and only – no-hitter, a performance punctuated by Robin Yount’s diving catch in centerfield for the final out.

No. 13

Wisconsin versus UCLA, 1994 Rose Bowl

  • UW QB Darrell Bevell scampers 21 yards for what would prove to be the winning touchdown in the Badgers first Rose Bowl win.

No. 12

Oakland A’s vs. Milwaukee Brewers, Sept. 1988

  • Jose Canseco steals second base to become the first MLB player to hit at least 40 home runs and steal 40 bases in a season.

No. 11

Super Bowl XLV

  • Green Bay safety Nick Collins intercept Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger in Super Bowl XLV, and the Packers go on to win the World Championship.

No. 10

Game 4 of 2004 ALCS

  • Boston’s Dave Roberts steals second base and scores the tying run on Bill Mueller’s single off of Yankees’ ace closer Mariano Rivera. Boston goes on to win Game 4, 5, 6 and 7 and become the first MLB team to rally from a 3-0 deficit in a seven-game series. For good measure, the Red Sox sweep St. Louis in the World Series.

No. 9

Boston College vs. Miami, Nov. 23 1984

  • Boston College quarterback Doug Flutie sends a Hail Mary 44 yards that some how lands in the hands of Gerald Phelan giving BC the 47-45 win on the game’s final play.

No. 8

Game 1 of the 1988 World Series

  • Kirk Gibson homers off the Oakland A’s dominant closer Dennis Eckersley to send the L.A. Dodgers on their way to a World Championship sweep .

No. 7

Game 6 of 2011 World Series

  • David Freese hits a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 11th inning to give the St. Louis Cardinals a 10-9 win over the Texas Rangers, which were one strike away from winning the World Series twice.

No. 6

Kentucky versus Duke, March 28, 1992

  • With 2.1 seconds remaining in overtime, Duke’s Grant Hill finds Christian Laettner with a full court pass. Laettner hits a jumper as time expires to send Duke to the Final Four and — eventually — the National Championship.

No. 5

Game 7 of 1998 NBA FInals

  • Michael Jordan shakes off the flu to hit the game-winning shot over Byron Russell to give the Bulls their sixth World Championship and second three-peat.

No. 4

Game 6 of 1986 World Series

  • Down to the final strike, Mets outfielder Mookie Wilson drops a slow roller up the first base line that gets behind Boston Red Sox first baseman Bill Bucker and scores Ray Knight from second base with the winning run. New York would go on to win Game 7 and the World Championship.

No. 3

Super Bowl XXXI

  • Green Bay kick returner Desmond Howard returns a kickoff 99 yards to essentially seal the win and give the Packers their first World Championship in 30 years.

No. 2

Colorado versus Michigan, Sept 24. 1994

  • Kordell Stewart takes the snap with six seconds left and launches a Hail Mary that finds Michael Westbrook in the end zone to give Colorado that 26-21 win.

No. 1

Tiger Woods on the 16th hole at the 2005 Masters

  • Tiger Woods pulls the string on an improbable chip shot on the 16th hole at the Masters in 2005. On watching it again, the announcers analysis of what Woods needs to do seems so over the top in retrospect.