49ers Fumble Super Bowl Chance, Giants Win 20-17

Field goal knocks New York over the top in overtime
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 22, 2012 11:22 PM CST
49ers Fumble Super Bowl Chance, Giants Win 20-17
San Francisco 49ers' Kyle Williams (10) fumbles as he is hit by New York Giants' Jacquian Williams (57).   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

(Newser) – The San Francisco 49ers watched their chance at the Super Bowl slip through their fingers yesterday when the New York Giants converted a fumble to a field goal in overtime. The Giants tapped a 20-17 victory and their fifth trip to the Super Bowl. Two key errors by back-up punt returner Kyle Williams cost the Niners the game. Williams, filling in for the injured Ted Ginn Jr., muffed one punt in the fourth quarter to set up a Giants touchdown and a 17-14 lead. Niners kicker David Akers ended up tying the score with a 25-yard field goal. But in overtime, the ball was knocked from Williams' hands to give the Giants the ball at the 24-yard line.

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Five plays later Lawrence Tynes booted in the winning 31-yard field goal for New York. Williams put his hands on his helmet and "dropped his head in disgust," observed AP. The Giants will now face off against the New England Patriots for the Super Bowl title February 5. (Read more San Francisco 49ers stories.)

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