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October 18, 2012
Ding! Ding! Goldson, Lynch main event in "football fight"

SAN FRANCISCO -- Jim Harbaugh called Thursday's game a "football fight," and safety Dashon Goldson and running back Marshawn Lynch may have been the main event.

Lynch finished with 103 yards, breaking tackles by some of the 49ers best players and shoving Goldson for an extra five yards after a short pass in the first quarter. Goldson ended up body-slamming the big running back as he was driven backward on the play, and he got in a few more shots a few snaps later after Lynch had been stopped for minus-1 yards. Goldson got up, stood over Lynch and seemed to taunt the prone running back, drawing a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

The Seahawks ended up kicking a field goal on the drive. Goldson said he used to be a talker on the field but, until Thursday, mostly had toned down the rhetoric. "Because I could get overboard," he said. "And it cost me 15 (yards), man."

Lynch's outing, meanwhile, followed a 116-yard effort by Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw on Sunday. It was the first time the 49ers had allowed 100-plus yards to a runner in consecutive weeks since Steven Jackson and Brian Westbrook did it in September, 2006.

The 49ers didn't seem to care.

Said Justin Smith, who had nine tackles to lead the 49ers: "They run what they do really well, and they have the right man for the job in No. 24 (Lynch). He got some yards, but we came out with the win, and that's all that matters."

"We always play each other tough," Goldson said. "That football team is a good football team, and it kind of reminds us of us -- good, hard football team. Plays fast, plays hard. And they have good players."

Ted Ginn reprised his role as both kick and punt returner against the Seahawks, and Jim Harbaugh said Ginn's history against Seattle had something to do with the decision. Kyle Williams had been handling the kick returner job since making a splash in a Week 3 loss to Minnesota. 

Ginn, however, has gotten healthier -- and stronger -- since returning from an ankle injury three weeks ago. He also had two returns for touchdowns -- on a punt and a kickoff - in last year's game against the Seahawks at Candlestick Park.

"Ted Ginn had a great game tonight," Harbaugh said. "We played really well on special teams."

Ginn didn't have quite the impact he did a year ago, but he had two big punt returns -- 38 and 15 yards -- the second of which helped set up David Akers' second field goal.

Et cetera -- Left tackle Joe Staley was cleared to play Wednesday after suffering a concussion four days earlier, and he ended up playing the entire game. Receiver Mario Manningham, however, missed the contest with a shoulder injury and went in for X-rays afterward.

* Running back Brandon Jacobs was in uniform for the first time this season. The big running back, however, was the only 49er who did not play in the game. 

* Outside linebacker Clark Haggans saw his first action of the season, entering the game in the third quarter as the 49ers sent in some of their reserves to relieve the starters.

-- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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