NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- Friends, family and neighbors came together Sunday night at Appleby's restaurant at New Roc City in downtown New Rochelle to watch hometown hero Ray Rice play the biggest game of his already amazing football career.
Rice will return to New Rochelle as a Super Bowl Champion.
The Baltimore Ravens withstood a power outage and a desperate second-half comeback by the San Francisco 49ers on their way to winning the team's second Super Bowl, 34-31.
The Ravens' defeated the New York Giants, 34-7 after the 2000 seasons.
The game nearly got out of hand when Ravens kick returner Jacoby Jones tied an NFL record with a 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown on the opening kickoff of the second half to give Baltimore a 28-6 lead. A power failure caused a 34 minute delay after which the 49ers mounted a furious comeback.
Rice was the Ravens leading rusher with 59 yards on 20 carries.
Joe Flacco was named the games MVP, completing 22 of 33 passes for 287 yards with 3 touchdowns.
Complete game coverage at CBSSports.com
O'D Alexander, the subject of a recent Talk of the Sound article on his incredible encounter with Ray Rice several weeks ago. attended as a special guest of the New Rochelle Municipal Housing Authority. O'D was interviewed by several media outlets.
Statement by Council Member Jared Rice.
"For those of us who have seen Ray Rice grow from the football fields of NRHS, to Rutgers University and now onto the Baltimore Ravens taking home a 2013 Super Bowl victory, we are all so proud to have been on this journey with him. We are truly happy to have his close friends and family here in New Rochelle to celebrate his success"
Statement by Mayor Noam Bramson, regarding Ray Rice’s Super Bowl victory.
“Ray's talent on the field is matched by his strength of character off the field. In addition to being a great role model for youngsters, Ray has also contributed his time and energy to countless programs in New Rochelle. We are very proud of all that Ray has achieved, and are looking forward to celebrating the terrific season and now Super Bowl victory of our hometown hero."
Plans for a hometown celebration are in the works. Details to follow.
UPDATE: Journal News has a nice mention of O'D Alexander, Ravens' Ray Rice wows folks back home in New Rochelle
That message resonates with Odell Alexander, a Port Chester High School junior and outside linebacker-running back, in the foster system. His social worker, Leslie Farrucci, attended one of Rice’s games in late summer; she reached out to a friend who knew his family. On Dec. 11, the running back called Alexander, 17, and spoke with him for 20 minutes.
“When he got on the phone, he was really down to earth. We talked about staying out of trouble, keeping my grades up, him trying to go to the Super Bowl, which now he’s done,” Alexander said. “It keeps my hopes up, knowing that I could get there someday.”
Photos by Jen Parente from Ray Rice event at Appleby's