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The wait is over: Chiefs defeat 49ers to win Super Bowl LIV

Kansas City Chiefs' Travis Kelce (87) celebrates his touchdown with Kansas City Chiefs' Damien Williams during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl 54 football game against the San Francisco 49ers, Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Kansas City, Andy, the wait is over.

The Chiefs are Super Bowl LIV champions for the first time in 50 years, defeating the San Francisco 49ers 31-20 on Sunday night from Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.

For Andy Reid, the 222nd win is the sweetest, as the Chiefs’ head coach won his first-ever championship in his 21st year of coaching.

The champions, led by sensational young quarterback Patrick Mahomes, had to overturn a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit against the NFL’s leading defense, scoring 21 unanswered points in the final six minutes of the night.

Mahomes shook off a difficult night in the process, overcoming two interceptions in eight pass attempts to rack up 286 passing yards and three total touchdowns.

The Chiefs managed to stay in it despite Mahomes’ initial struggles in large part to running back Damien Williams, who racked up 104 yards on 17 carries with one rushing and one receiving touchdown.

While all eyes were on the matchup of the Chiefs’ explosive offense and the 49ers’ stout defense, Kansas City held San Francisco quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to 219 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions.

More impressively, they held running back Raheem Mostert — who ripped the Green Bay Packers open for 220 yards in the NFC Championship Game — to just 58 yards.

The Chiefs’ high-powered, explosive offense gave plenty of respect to the 49ers’ stout defense in an opening half that concluded in a 10-10 tie. It was just the fourth time in Super Bowl history that the game was tied at the break.

Following Robbie Gould’s deadlock-breaking field goal on the 49ers’ opening drive of the night, Mahomes directed the Chiefs on a 15-play, 75-yard drive that concluded with the quarterback keeping it himself on an option from a yard out.

His score was the first rushing touchdown recorded by a quarterback since Colin Kaepernick in Super Bowl XLVII.

Kansas City had an opportunity to put the hammer down early when Garoppolo was harried and hit by a Chiefs blitz, forcing the quarterback to float up a duck that was picked off by Bashaud Breeland near midfield less than a minute into the second quarter.

The Chiefs brought it to the Niners’ 13-yard-line, but the drive stalled as meek play-calling let San Francisco off the hook. Harrison Butker’s 31-yard field goal put the Chiefs up a touchdown with 9:32 to go.

Less than five minutes later, the game was tied as Garoppolo came up with a vital response to his interception, leading the 49ers on a seven-play drive that ate up 80 yards.

Fullback Kyle Juszczyk provided the tying score with a 15-yard reception, which was his first touch of the postseason. It was also a monumental touchdown for his alma mater as he became the first player from Harvard to score in a Super Bowl.

Almost half of the 49ers’ offensive production came from wide receiver Deebo Samuel, who accounted for 62 total yards on two carries and four receptions.

He would gain just 30 more in the second half.

Following an extended break featuring Shakira and Jennifer Lopez, the wheels fell off for Kansas City.

In a season in which he hadn’t thrown two interceptions in a game, Mahomes was picked off twice during the second half as the 49ers defense was unrelenting in their pursuit of Kansas City’s star quarterback.

After Robbie Gould’s second field goal of the night five minutes into the third, Mahomes was picked off by Fred Warner, who slipped under Tyreek Hill for the easy interception — Mahomes’ first in 164 pass attempts.

The 49ers turned it into a touchdown with Raheem Mostert punching it in from one yard out.

Down 20-10 entering the fourth, Mahomes was picked off in the red zone to delay the Chiefs’ comeback effort. On a 3rd-&-6 from the San Francisco 23-yard-line, Mahomes’ pass intended for Hill was behind the receiver and deflected into the arms of Tarvarius Moore for his first career interception.

While the 49ers came up empty following the second pick, the Chiefs finally found a rebuttal with 6:13 left when Mahomes hit tight end Travis Kelce for a one-yard touchdown. The score was set up by a 44-yard connection between Mahomes and Hill before a pass-interference call on Moore in the end zone put the Chiefs on the one-yard-line.

They took the lead less than four minutes later when Mahomes hit Williams for a five-yard pass with 2:44 to go.

Garoppolo would drive the 49ers to their 42-yard-line, but the Chiefs defense kept its suddenly immovable form, forcing a turnover on downs when the 49ers went for it on fourth down with 1:25 remaining.

Williams provided the icing on the Chiefs’ victory cake with a 38-yard rush with 1:12 remaining to get the party started in Kansas City.

Joe Pantorno