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(Saturday, December 24th)
Final Score: San Francisco 19, Seattle 17
Seattle, WA (Sports Network) - David Akers kicked four field goals, including the game-winning 39-yarder late in the fourth quarter to push the San Francisco 49ers past the Seattle Seahawks, 19-17 at CenturyLink Field.
Akers now has 42 field goals made this season, establishing a new NFL single- season record.
Frank Gore rushed for 83 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries, while Alex Smith threw for 179 yards on 14-of-26 passing for the 49ers (12-3), who have the NFC West crown locked up and can clinch the No. 2 seed and an opening-round bye if the New Orleans Saints fall to the Atlanta Falcons on Monday. San Francisco has won two consecutive games since losing to Arizona, 21-19 on December 11.
"We knew what was on the line," Smith said. "They (Seattle) were playing for their playoff lives. They threw everything at us. They were geared up and this is as hostile of an environment as it gets."
Marshawn Lynch did two things on Saturday that no one else has been able to accomplish against the San Francisco defense this season. Lynch finished with 107 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries. It was the first rushing touchdown the 49ers have given up this season and the first 100-yard rushing game they have allowed in their past 36 contests.
"I think our guys went toe-to-toe with them in a game that we really had a chance to win. We played them in the style that we liked. We played hard and tough at the line of scrimmage and ran the ball really well," Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said.
Tarvaris Jackson ended with 163 yards and a score on 15-of-28 passing, while Doug Baldwin caught a touchdown pass for the Seahawks, (7-8) who had their three-game winning streak halted.
Trailing by one, 17-16, the 49ers started their game-winning drive with a bang, as Smith connected with Michael Crabtree for a 41-yard completion down the left sideline, placing the ball at the Seahawks 28. Four plays later, Akers capped his record-setting day by hitting the game winner for San Francisco with 2:57 remaining.
On the Seahawks ensuing possession, they got up to the 49ers 48, but on 3rd- and-3, Jackson was flushed out of the pocket to the right and the ball was punched out and recovered by San Francisco at the 36.
The Seahawks had one last shot to win the game, as they got the ball back on their 26 with 41 seconds to play and no timeouts, but they were unable to move the ball and Jackson's pass on 4th-and-2 fell incomplete, sealing the win for the 49ers.
Seattle opened the scoring on its first drive of the game, as Jackson led his troops 80 yards in seven plays before hooking up with Baldwin for a 13-yard touchdown strike to give his team a 7-0 lead.
San Francisco bridged the first and second quarters with an 11-play, 56-yard drive that culminated with a 53-yard field goal from Akers to pull the 49ers within four, 7-3.
Seattle extended its lead to 10-3 when Jackson led a 12-play, 42-yard drive down to the San Francisco one. On 3rd-and-1, Jackson took the snap and went around the left end toward the corner of the end zone, but was bumped out of bounds before the goal line to prevent the touchdown. Steven Hauschka then connected on a 19-yard field goal with 1:30 to play in the first half.
On the 49ers' first possession of the second half, they marched 75 yards in eight plays before Gore capped the drive with a four-yard touchdown plunge to tie the game at 10.
San Francisco took a 13-10 lead on their next possession when Akers finished off a 10-play, 37-yard drive with a 29-yard field goal late in the third quarter.
The 49ers extended their lead to 16-10 with a nine-play, 40-yard march, capped by another Akers field goal -- this one from 44-yards out with 12:37 remaining in regulation.
With just under seven minutes to go in the final quarter, the Seahawks came up with a huge defensive play to temporarily take the lead.
On 4th-and-9 from the San Francisco 38, Andy Lee's punt was blocked by Heath Farwell, turning the ball over to the Seahawks on the San Francisco four. On the very next play, Lynch went around the left end for a four-yard touchdown to put the Seahawks up 17-16 with 6:41 remaining.
The all-time regular season series between the teams is even at 13 games apiece...49ers linebacker Patrick Willis missed his third consecutive game with a hamstring injury...Lynch established a new Seahawks franchise record with a touchdown in his 11th consecutive game...San Francisco went 3-for-14 on third down, while Seattle converted five of its third down chances...San Francisco outgained Seattle, 349-267.
12/24 21:13:25 ET
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