Best St. Louis sports moments

Sports Staff

With 13 major professional sports championships to its name, St. Louis is one of the most decorated cities in the country. While we may be living in a baseball town—11 of those titles come from the Cardinals—St. Louis’ athletic history is rich, across a variety of sports. Here are some memories of accomplishments that St. Louis has enjoyed:

Game 6, 2011 World Series
While the Cardinals didn’t win the World Series in Game 6, this is the game that St. Louis residents will remember forever. That cold night in late October was looking like a forgettable night in Cardinals lore. But facing a 7-4 deficit in the eighth inning, those Cardiac Cards began clawing back. After St. Louis scored one run in the eighth, hometown boy David Freese stepped to the plate with two runners on and two outs in the ninth inning. With the Rangers one strike away from winning their first ever World Series, Freese smacked a line drive off the right-field wall for a game-tying triple as a sellout crowd at Busch Stadium went ballistic. The Rangers regained a two-run lead in the 10th off a Josh Hamilton homer, but Lance Berkman laced a single to center to tie the game again. Finally, with rally towels waving all around, Freese dug into the box once again in the 11th inning. He launched a 3-2 pitch into the grass beyond the center-field wall as Joe Buck told the TV audience that he “will see you tomorrow night.” I was fortunate enough to be standing in center field that night. My friend Katy turned to me as Freese rounded the bases and asked, “What did we just see?” History. – Sahil Patel

1904 Olympics
The Olympic spirit is peaking in St. Louis, with a number of native Missourians competing in the Sochi Games and Blues forward T.J. Oshie leading the U.S. men’s hockey team to victory over rival Russia. But the spirit may have been strongest 110 years ago, when St. Louis itself hosted the Olympic Games. At the time considered a sideshow for the World’s Fair, the St. Louis Games were held mostly on our very own Francis Field. One highlight was St. Louis gymnast George Eyser, who hauled in six medals in one day with a wooden leg prosthetic, his left leg having been run over by a train years earlier. He was the only Olympian with an artificial leg for 104 years, until a South African amputee swam in the 2008 Beijing Games. – Danny Schwartz

Hawks leave St. Louis
St. Louis may lack a basketball team currently, but from the mid-1950s to late 1960s, the St. Louis Hawks dominated the Western Division for more than a decade, missing the playoffs in only one season and reaching the NBA finals four times, winning the franchise’s one and only championship against the Boston Celtics in 1958. The Hawks were led by forward Bob Pettit, a two-time NBA MVP and 11-time All-Star. Even though Pettit retired in 1965, the Hawks remained contenders and had their best regular-season record of 56-26 in the1967-68 season. Despite their strong fan base and high performance, owner Ben Kerner still decided to sell the team, which moved to Atlanta, where the current Hawks reside.– Derek Shyr

Rams win Super Bowl XXXIV
In one of the greatest Super Bowls of all time, the St. Louis Rams held off a last-second push from the Tennessee Titans to win 23-16. “The Greatest Show on Turf” was hardly that for most of the game in a defensive struggle against the Tennessee Titans, but after the Rams blew a 16-0 lead, Kurt Warner connected with Isaac Bruce on a 73-yard touchdown pass to grab a 23-16 lead with just less than two minutes left. Titans’ quarterback Steve McNair engineered a potential scoring drive, but Tennessee wide receiver Kevin Dyson ended up just one yard short of sending the game into overtime as time expired. Warner was named the Super Bowl MVP, and the Rams won their first and only Super Bowl.– Nick Kauzlarich

Blues’ wing wins Olympic hockey shootout
Hockey shootouts are a terrible way to determine a game’s winner and loser. And international shootout rules—which allow for the same player to shoot over and over if the score remains tied after the initial three shooters—make this glorified skills competition even more of a farce. But these concerns in no way diminished my enthusiasm for the U.S.’s shootout win over Russia in the preliminary round of the Olympic men’s hockey tournament last week. T.J. Oshie of the St. Louis Blues scored four times in six attempts for the Americans, including the game-winner and twice when a miss would have won the game for the host Russians. For a brief period after the game ended, Oshie’s Wikipedia page had been edited to name him “an American hero,” and as the U.S. enters the elimination rounds, I can only hope Oshie adds to his budding heroic legacy. – Zach Kram

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