Most casual sports fans were stunned Sunday when the New Orleans Saints defeated the Indianapolis Colts 31-17 to win Super Bowl XLIV in Miami.
Not so at Guilderland's Teresian House nursing home, though. The residents there knew it was coming after the Angelic Saints edged the Devilish Colts 35-34 in last Friday's Wheelchair Super Bowl VII.
The outcome of the Wheelchair Super Bowl wasn't decided until the final play of the game. The Angelic Saints had one play to run out the clock, but the pass was fumbled, and a mad scramble for the loose ball ensued. Not among the residents, of course, but among the staffers who were pushing the wheelchairs specifically Santos Colon and Nancy Miranda. The ball a plastic, inflatable ball, not the real thing " bounced out of bounds, ending the game.
"I was trying to run the clock down," said Colon, who was pushing one of the Angelic Saints. "I couldn't let them score."
"That comes from playing football with my brothers when I was younger," said Miranda, who was pushing a Devilish Colt.
There were several moments of competitiveness throughout the game, but it was all good-natured competitiveness. After all, the point of the Wheelchair Super Bowl was to allow residents and staff members a chance to have some fun.
"We do it for positive interaction between the residents and the staff," said Teresian House physical therapist Heather Campbell, who organizes the Wheelchair Super Bowl. "It's timely because the residents know that the Super Bowl is coming up. Even though some of the residents are in their 90s, they're still interested in current events such as the Super Bowl."
Campbell spent the previous day setting up the "field," which was laid out in masking tape on the carpeted floor of the Teresian House's St. Joseph's Hall.