EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Seattle Seahawks fans knew at halftime Sunday night that their team would win, but they couldn’t celebrate until the final gun sounded. No big deal: What’s 30 more minutes when you’ve waited 38 years for a Super Bowl championship?
After the Seahawks’ 43-8 victory over the Denver Broncos was official, the navy, green and gray-wearing contingent at Super Bowl XLVIII burst into celebration, with decades’ worth of emotion pouring like the confetti that littered MetLife Stadium.
In Section 307, Seattle natives Gregg Dalton and Scott Iwata waved a 12th Man flag, denoting a fan base that is as loud as it is loyal.
“The city deserves it, and it’s unbelievable to be here for it,” Iwata said. “I’m speechless. It’s amazing.”
The Seahawks led 22-0 at halftime, and when Percy Harvin led off the second half with an 87-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, the deal was sealed. Broncos fans headed for the exits, but not before congratulating Seahawks fans.
“I have to say through the whole thing that both teams’ fans had a lot of respect for the other team,” said Dalton, who recently moved to Santa Monica and made the Super Bowl trip with Iwata. “So everybody, like the whole time the Broncos fans were coming down, they’re like, ‘Congratulations. You guys have a great team.’ “
Added Iwata: “You know, on one hand, I feel bad for them. I mean, there’s somebody who has to lose this. It’s unbelievable. I don’t know if I ever thought I’d see this myself.”
A few rows higher in the section, Bremerton, Wash., firefighters Jeremy Dixon and Benny Cammarata wore Seahawks-themed fireman’s hats, high-fived those around them and took in the moment.
“Lifelong fan of the Seahawks. I’ve been waiting a long time for this,” Cammarata said. “This team is the best — the most entertaining team I’ve ever seen. We showed that we’re the best tonight.”
Dixon and Cammarata weren’t sure how they’d celebrate the Super Bowl title, although Cammarata assured that they’d be back in Seattle in time for the parade. Iwata’s plans were a little more immediate: He was headed to a Seahawks bar in New York to start a long night — and morning — of revelry.
“My flight’s at 7:30 in the morning. I’m not sleeping,” he said. “I’m staying up all night, and I’m going to party right back to Seattle. It’s going to be awesome.”