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Volume 20 No. 42
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Game Changers: Memorable events

We asked this year’s Game Changers:

What is the best or most memorable sporting event you’ve attended?  

  • Jean Afterman // An obvious answer, final game of the 2009 World Series.

  • Christina Alejandre // My first esports event, IPL 5 in Las Vegas, made esports a real thing for me. After attending that event, I got it. I got why esports was on its way to becoming something BIG.

  • Kenyatta Bynoe // The 2004 NBA Finals, when Detroit won. I’m a longtime Pistons fan.

  • Katie Bynum // A combination of my first UNC-Duke game in Cameron Indoor Stadium followed by UNC’s ACC championship win in 1998 with a “house divided” (my family has a fun perspective on the rivalry).

  • Danielle Cantor // My first Duke-UNC game at Cameron Indoor; Game 6 of the 2002 Western Conference Finals (Sacramento Kings-L.A. Lakers) because it was the most exciting and controversial game where I/SFX had clients on both teams); and the 1999 Women’s World Cup.

  • Jennifer Cohen // I have seen so many great games at the collegiate level that it’s tough to pick one. That being said, the most memorable was watching Kelsey Plum score 57 points in front of a sold-out crowd to claim the NCAA women’s all-time scoring record for women’s basketball. It was the most dominating performance, emotional and magical moment I have ever witnessed because she worked BEYOND her talent to accomplish history.

  • Kirsten Corio // Wimbledon for its sheer beauty and majesty; the U.S. Open for the lifelong memories created with my family; the 2008 Boston Celtics NBA championship game for the sheer electricity and Bostonian joy of it.

  • Sarah Cummins // Two: Game 6 of the 1986 World Series watching the New York Mets beat the Red Sox — at age 14, witnessing sports history in the stands at Shea Stadium is something I will never forget. Second, the 2001 U.S. Open men’s quarterfinal between Sampras and Agassi. During the 3-plus-minute standing ovation, during fourth-set tiebreak, you knew you were watching the end of an era.

  • Kobe Bryant moves in to score against the Boston Celtics in Game 5 of the 2010 NBA Finals.
    Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
  • Ayala Deutsch // Game 5 of the 2010 NBA Finals featured a Celtics-Lakers matchup with so much history and the game itself was great — Kobe performing at his peak, but Paul Pierce driving the Celtics to a win.

  • Kimberly Fields // Super Bowl LI.

  • Laura Froelich // The 100th Rose Bowl Game, watching my husband’s Michigan State Spartans defeat defending champion Stanford 24-20. I’d never been to the Rose Bowl before — it’s such an iconic venue — and the game was so exciting!

  • Libby Geist // The 2008 Superclasico match in Argentina — River versus Boca. I thought sports in the U.S. were big time — I’m a Big Ten girl — and I will never forget that day. Fireworks in the stands, police in riot gear, the entire stadium singing/screaming nonstop … That game and the passion of those fans changed my entire view on sports culture — I loved every minute of it.

  • Hannah Gordon // Super Bowl 47 was the most memorable but not the best. I will never forget the lights going out or the agony of coming that close to the pinnacle and falling short. That pain is motivation.

  • Shauna Griffiths // Being a part of the first game of the inaugural season of the Seattle Storm, and a part of the first game of the NBDL’s Asheville Altitude during the inaugural year of the NBDL are standouts for me. Both moments gave me a taste for progress in my career, and they represented new doors opening for players, front office staff, brands and fans.

  • Catie Griggs // Atlanta United’s inaugural home game.

  • Amy Howe // My oldest son’s first soccer tournament, when he scored the game-winning goal of the tournament.

  • Allison Keller // 2015 Players Championship win by Rickie Fowler when he rallied from a 5-shot deficit to win.

  • Morane Kerek // Other than the Olympic and Paralympic Games I’ve attended, the Women’s World Cup final in Vancouver in 2015. Some colleagues and I were attending a conference there and our flight landed just over an hour from the start. The travel gods smiled favorably on us that day and we made it through customs, dropped bags at the hotel and into the stadium by the national anthems. I could practically touch the roof, our seats were so high up in the stands, but there was so much energy and excitement from the largely U.S. fans that it was an amazing show. Oh, and Carli Lloyd was pretty awesome too!

  • Gina Lehe // The World Series in Chicago, last fall. As a Cubs fan since childhood, being a part of the magical run was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I will never forget the aura of Wrigley — the sights, sounds, smells — pure elation and electricity was in the air. In the streets on our way to the ballpark and then stepping inside, history came to life right before our eyes.

  • Lauren Cooks Levitan // NCAA Final Four — National Championship Game (Duke lost to Louisville, 1986).

  • Adrienne Lofton // My college volleyball career was full of firsts. I went to a historically black college, Howard University, that was the first (HBCU) team to make it to the NCAA tournament. Our first big game in the spotlight was during the NCAA championship tournament. It was awe-inspiring. And it’s why I work in sports. The unexpected and uninvited can show up and change history.

  • Jodi Logsdon // Super Bowl 50. I was in my first year at CBS Sports when we had the honor of presenting Super Bowl 50, and it was an experience I’ll never forget. I am proud to have contributed to our productions leading up to and throughout the game, from our weeklong CBS Sports Network presence in San Francisco, to our “NFL Today” special pregame shows, and through the postgame coverage on CBS and CBS Sports Network. The atmosphere of the game was fantastic, as Peyton Manning capped his Hall of Fame career, and that was an unforgettable halftime show with Beyoncé, Bruno Mars and Coldplay!

  • Samita Mannapperuma // The Rio Olympics. I loved every part of the experience from watching Katie Ledecky dominate in the pool to sitting next to family members of competitors in the stands at many events.

  • Beth McClinton // The 2017 Rose Bowl, where USC scored 10 points in the final minutes of the game to overcome Penn State.

  • Stephanie McMahon // Besides WWE’s WrestleMania, Super Bowl 49 where the New England Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks.

  • Marisabel Muñoz // My first MLS Cup, in 2002, when Carlos “Pescadito” Ruiz scores a dramatic golden goal in extra time and breaks into tears to win the LA Galaxy’s first-ever league title.

  • Erika Nardini // My first Chelsea football game.

  • Elizabeth O’Brien // SuperBowl XLVI — I am a Giants fan.

  • Nzinga Shaw // Super Bowl XLII New York Giants versus New England Patriots in Phoenix. As a native New Yorker, it was fantastic to watch the underdog Giants ruin the undefeated Patriots’ perfect season!

  • USC quarterback Matt Leinert scores with the help of “Bush push” the 2005 USC-Notre Dame game.
    Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
  • Renata Simril // The 2005 USC v. Notre Dame “Bush Push” game.

  • Shauna Smith // 1998 NCAA Women’s Final Four; went as a kid with my dad as a Christmas gift, and had an awesome time in Kansas City!

  • Keisha Taylor // Game 5 of the 2012 NBA championship when Miami defeated Oklahoma City. Witnessing this in person, from courtside seats with my mentor, was the most amazing experience.

  • Renée Tirado // Super Bowl XLII by myself!

  • Renee Washington // London Olympics — pure magic.

  • Lynn White // World Cup of Hockey 2004 in Toronto. I probably shouldn’t have traveled so far from home while 37 weeks pregnant. My Canadian-born daughter, Abby, turns 13 this September.