2015 Memorable Sports Moments

Flashing back to some of the most shocking moments of 2015.

A new year brings new opportunities, but before looking ahead one must look to the past and think about the most memorable moments of 2015. From incredible championship winning plays to the biggest upsets in sports history, 2015 had some of the most exciting moments in professional sports history.

PATRIOTS CLAIM ANOTHER NATIONAL TITLE

Although there are plenty of championships every year, 2015 cannot forget about Super Bowl  XLIX. The National Football League Championship was the best of the best that year batting for the title: New England Patriots versus the Seattle Seahawks.

The game was neck and neck for the first half, tied 7-7. With 30 seconds left in half, New England scored a touchdown. However, the Seahawks did not let up. Quickly, Seattle flew down the field and scored with six seconds left in the half tying the game 14-14.  After several points cored from each team the Seahawks were down 28-24. After an amazing drive, Seattle found themselves on the one-yard line with a minute left in the game. The whole nation stood watch, eyes glued to TV, waiting for the deciding play. With 25 seconds left, Seahawk quarterback Russell Wilson hiked the ball, then the unbelievable happened. Patriots rookie Malcolm Butler intercepted the pass and leapt out of the end zone, saving the ball from being a safety. The world was amazed by the decision that cost Seattle the title of a lifetime.

“It was truly unbelievable,” said sophomore Kristian Huber. “I could not believe my eyes; they literally threw the game away.”

Shortly after the New England Patriots were labeled Super Bowl Champion, Seattle dropped their heads away regenerating the play and remembering their thrilling season that got them there.

GOLDEN STATE SECURES CHAMPIONSHIP GOLD

Everyone loves a good underdog story, but the 2015 NBA finals ending was remarkably unbelievable. After generations of frustration, the Golden State Warriors dedication finally paid off. The Warriors lead by Stephen Curry and Steve Kerr won 67 games and defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers in an epic battle in the NBA finals.

For the first time in 40 years, the Warriors brought home the National Championship title. Golden State won the first game by only eight points, then Cleveland quickly shot back winning the second and third games. However, Golden State beat Cleveland in the next two games, 103-82 and 104-91, to take the lead in the series 3-2.

Finally, the opportunity arrived and Golden State swallowed it whole as they defeated Cleveland in the sixth game allowing them to win the series. For the first time since 1975, the Golden State Warriors went to sleep as National Champions.

LLOYD’S HAT TRICK STUNS THE WORLD

The summer was full of hot weather and intense action as the United States women’s national team traveled to Canada to compete in the World Cup tournament. With temperatures on the field rising above 100 degrees, the trials the women went through to advance to the finals seemed never ending. But they reached the championship game where one of the most memorable sports moments of 2015 occurred.

U.S.’s Carli Lloyd scored the first goal in the 2015 World Cup Final against Japan after only 3 minutes elapsed in the game by burying the ball in the back of the net. Only two minutes later, Lloyd got another goal putting the U.S. up 2-0.  Just as the excitement started to settle down, Lauren Holliday capitalized on a defensive miscue and volleyed the third home goal to really put Japan in hot water.

In a split second, viewers around the world stood still. Many couldn’t believe their eyes as Lloyd caught Japan’s keeper off guard and scored from the halfway line. Once-in-a-lifetime is the only way to explain Lloyd’s World Cup hat trick. Although Japan scored several minutes after and scored again early in the second half, Tobin Heath snatched all hope from Japan as she scored a goal in the 54th minute.

After 93 minutes, U.S. women’s team was crowned World Champions.  

Sophomore Monica Wilhelm, the starting varsity girls soccer goalie, was very excited to see her favorite team, her national team, play in the World Cup Championship.

“I was screaming,” Wilhelm said. “I get really into watching soccer and I knew that the goal was a good start to take the lead. When U.S. was labeled World Champions, I actually got kind of emotional. Knowing your country is the best in the world is truly a great feeling, especially when I hope to be in that position one day.”

HAWKS STRIKE DOWN THE LIGHTNING IN GAME SIX

Another unforgettable championship was the nerve-racking 2015 Stanley Cup Final where the Chicago Blackhawks defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning to secure the sixth championship title for Chicago.

“I was pretty confident that the Hawks could win the Cup due to their great lineups and game strategy,” junior Nathan Sanchez said. “Although I thought it would be closer, having them win in four games was definitely less nerve-racking compared to all of the super close games.”

Chicago was up in the series 3-2 and had the home ice advantage. The game started off slow as both teams defense was impenetrable during the whole first period. The opportunity opened up early in the second period when Duncan Keith was the first to score. Tampa Bay fought back with everything they had, but they were no match for Chicago’s defense. In the third period, Patrick Kane secured the win with another goal, and the Hawks were Stanley Cup champions yet again.

ROUSEY: BATTERED, BRUISED AND WITH HER FIRST LOSS

Whether or not fans blame it on lack of preparation from Ronda Rousey or the well thought out game plan of Holly Holm, Holm’s devastating head kick will forever be remembered in sports history.

Undefeated UFC fighter Ronda Rousey fell from Holm’s head kick KO. Rousey was by far favorited due to her past wins and quick KO tactics. However, underdog Holm was not going down without a fight. The UFC females bantamweight title fight kicked off fist flying, with Holm quickly taking the advantage as she landed twice as many hits on the champion. Rousey was not expecting such a fight from a beginner MMA fighter. Then the biggest blow of the year occurred late into the second round. As Rousey struggled to stay up, Holm delivered her unbelievable left head kick.