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49ers cruise past Vikings, advance to NFC Championship game

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community news, 49ers cruise past Vikings, advance to NFC Championship game

In the days leading up to Jimmy Garoppolo’s first career postseason start, the sixth-year QB’s teammates and coaches spoke glowingly about their signal-caller. “I don’t have to talk to Jimmy about that,” WR Emmanuel Sanders said of playoff pressure. “He knows what it takes to go all the way and win it all.” 

And on Sunday, Garoppolo delivered as the San Francisco 49ers moved one step closer to winning its first Super Bowl since 1994. The Niners, behind their balanced offensive attack and stout defense, pulled away in a 27-10 victory over the Minnesota Vikings, scoring 13 second-half points and pitching a shutout in the game’s final 30 minutes. They limited Minnesota’s bell-cow running back Dalvin Cook to only 18 yards on eight carries, reinforcing the same dominance that they showed throughout their 13-3 regular season.

Despite only 11 players on the 49ers’ active roster on Saturday having postseason experience, San Francisco looked both calm and poised to open the first quarter. After forcing a Minnesota punt, Garoppolo marched his team downfield on an eight-play, 61-yard scoring drive, completing five passes to four different receivers, the last of which was a three-yard score to wideout Kendrick Bourne. 

Minnesota would answer on its ensuing possession thanks to a 41-yard touchdown catch from Stefon Diggs, but the Vikings would total only 42 total yards on their 20 other plays of the first half. 

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