AP NEWS
Related topics

City Revels In 49ers’ Super Bowl Victory

January 23, 1989

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Tens of thousands of fans jammed the streets and police reported about 90 arrests in a spontaneous outpouring of jubilation over the San Francisco 49ers’ last-minute Super Bowl victory.

In Cincinnati, which lost a 3-point lead with 34 seconds left in the Bengals’ second Super Bowl loss to the 49ers in seven years, some fans cried, others shrugged as they left Fountain Square Plaza and downtown bars Sunday night. All were quiet.

The arrests in San Francisco were mostly related to alcohol, and several windows were broken during the celebration, police Sgt. Jerry Senkir said.

Police also had a report of a single bullet from a handgun being shot through a house window, said Officer Steve Ortiz, who wasn’t sure if the shot was related to the celebrations. No one was injured.

Linda Beigel, waving a 49er pennant while leaning over police barricades in the city’s North Beach neighborhood, summed up the evening’s mood: ″We’re letting everyone around here know we’re the world champions.″

Interstate 480 was closed as were several major streets by police because of reveling fans, some of whom climbed atop cars and lampposts. Two cars were overturned on Mission Street, Senkir said.

The 49ers defeated the Bengals 20-16 Sunday night after quarterback Joe Montana hit John Taylor with a 10-yard touchdown pass with 34 seconds remaining in the National Football League championship game.

Wide receiver Jerry Rice, who caught 12 passes for 222 yards, both Super Bowl records, was named the game’s most valuable player.

Throughout the city, thousands of fans lined streets and hung from car windows and the back of pickups, blowing horns, waving banners and yelling.

Market Street, the city’s major thoroughfare, was jammed for nearly 10 blocks as fans drove up and down, honking horns in celebration.

Emergency crews reported being swamped with calls about injuries.

″It’s utter chaos in the city, and people are getting hurt,″ said paramedic Tina Hagopian, as she treated an unidentified man on Broadway for bruises to the head and leg.

Fireworks lit up the sky in the largely Hispanic Mission District as fans erupted into the streets immediately after the victory over the Bengals.

″We stomped them like bugs in a barn,″ said William Bernhard, 21, on a jammed Mission Street corner. ″For the last five minutes, it was like having an electric eel attached to your spine.″

Another man stood on Mission Street, holding a stuffed Bengal tiger with a rope around its neck, occasionally tossing it under the wheels of passing cars.

Outside the jammed Mad Hatter sports bar on Geary Street, hundreds of bellowing fans poured into the street after the game, forcing officers to shut the street for nearly four hours.

In Cincinnati, police reported no incidents following the game, just disappointment.

″It was the same thing when we lost in 1982,″ Police Capt. Robin Hochstrasser said of the previous Super Bowl loss the San Francisco.

AP RADIO
Update hourly