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Cubs and Phillies Play Highest Scoring MLB Game in 1922

Chicago Cubs outfielder Hack Miller, who hit two home runs and had six RBI in the highest scoring game in MLB history that his team won 26-23 on August 25, 1922.

On August 25, 1922, the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies played in the highest scoring game in Major League Baseball history.  It was on this day that the Cubs defeated the Phillies 26-23 at Cubs Park(now Wrigley Field).

The Phillies came into the game with a 40-71 mark and in seventh place of eight teams in the NL standings.  Only the Boston Braves were behind them in the standings.  They were managed by Kaiser Wilhelm.

The Cubs were in the midst of a pennant race and were in second place in the NL standings behind the New York Giants with a 66-53 record.  They were managed by Bill Killefer, who was in his first full year as manager of the club.  He took over during the 1921 season and went 23-34 as the team finished seventh in the NL standings.

The Cubs began playing their games at Cubs Park(it became Wrigley Field in 1927) in 1916.  It was a year away from the grandstands being added by now owner William Wrigley and another five away from adding an upper deck in 1927.  The ballpark also was years away from having the high outfield walls and ivy covering them.  It was far different than what the ballpark resembles today.

Baseball was in a time of transition as the game was just moving into the Live Ball Era.  Before 1920, the game was centered around strategy and what fans now refer to these days as "small ball".  But when Babe Ruth came over to the Yankees in 1920, the home run began to become a prominent strategy for that franchise and would eventually filter down to the rest of the teams.

It hadn't caught on as much in the National League as of yet in 1922, but looking at the score of this game seemed to indicate it was on the way.  However, no one knew exactly how crazy this game between the Phillies and Cubs would be.

7,000 fans at Cubs Park were about to find out.

The Phillies started Jimmy Ring on the mound against Cubs starter Tony Kauffman.  Ring was going for his 12th win of the year while Kauffman was trying to win his 7th game.

The Cubs got the scoring started in the 1st inning when first baseman Ray Grimes singled in lead-off batter and center fielder Cliff Heathcote with two outs to take a 1-0 lead.

In the top of the 2nd inning, the Phillies got in on the scoring.

Philadelphia scored their first run on an error by Cubs third baseman Marty Krug off the bat of first baseman Roy Leslie.  Art Fletcher, who reached on an error with two outs by shortstop Charlie Hollocher, scored on the play.  Ring then helped himself and singled in Leslie to give the Phillies a 2-1 lead.  Russ Wrightstone's single drove in Ring to extend the Philadelphia lead to 3-1.  All three runs were unearned due to the error by Hollocher with two men out.

Philadelphia's 3-1 lead would be the last time they led all game long.

With the Cubs having two outs in the 2nd inning, it appeared they wouldn't get anything out of it.  But an error on a foul pop fly by Wrightstone from Heathcote opened the flood gates for Chicago.

Heathcote later walked in his at-bat to load the bases.  Hollocher then singled to right to score Krug and catcher Bob O'Farrell to tie the game.  Zeb Terry doubled in Heathcote and Hollocher to put the Cubs back out in front 5-3.  After Grimes walked, Marty Callaghan reached on an error by right fielder Curt Walker that allowed Terry to score.  Hack Miller then hit the first homer of the game -- a 3-run shot -- to give the Cubs a 9-3 lead.  Krug then doubled in his second at-bat of the inning before O'Farrell hit a 2-run homer to score him.  Kauffman then struck out to end the inning.  All 10 Cubs runs in the inning were unearned and they recorded six hits and benefited from two Philadelphia errors.

The Cubs led 11-3 after two, but the scoring was far from done in this one.

The Phillies scored two in their half of the 3rd inning when Walker hit a lead-off triple, and scored on a double to right field by Johnny Mokan.  Mokan then scored on a sacrifice fly by Leslie to make it 11-5.

The Cubs got their lead-off man on in the 3rd inning, but the next three batters were retired.

The Phillies got another run in the 4th inning when Mokan singled in Cy Williams to make it 11-6.

But the scoring barrage the Cubs had in the 2nd inning failed in comparison to what they'd do in the 4th inning.

The inning started with three straight singles by Callaghan, Miller, and Krug.  Callaghan scored on the hit by Krug.  After an O'Farrell sacrifice and Turner Barber pinch-hit walk, Heathcote singled to center field to score Miller and Krug to make it 14-6.  After the Heathcote hit, the Phillies replaced King on the mound with Lefty Weinert.

Weinert was greeted with a double to right field off the bat of Hollocher as Barber and Heathcote came around to score.  After Terry walked and Grimes was hit by a pitch, Callaghan in his second at-bat of the inning singled to drive in Hollocher and Terry to make it 18-6.  Miller then hit his second 3-run homer of the game.

Later in the inning, Heathcote hit a bases loaded double to score two more for the Cubs.  Hollocher then hit a sacrifice fly to score Barber to make it 24-6.  Grimes, the Cubs leading batter that year, then doubled to right field to score Heathcote for the final run of the inning.  Callaghan struck out in his third at-bat of the inning.

The Cubs had scored 14 runs on 11 hits and two errors in the fourth inning.  Two of those runs were unearned because Barber reached on an error with two outs in his second at-bat.  So they scored in double digits in runs for the second time in the game, and got a record three at-bats from Callaghan in the inning.

The Cubs were up 25-6 and seemingly the game was over.

The Phillies got three runs in the top of the 5th inning on a 2-run triple from Wrightstone and run-scoring double from Frank Parkinson to make it 25-9.  They scored their three runs off of Cubs reliever George Stueland.

A Hollocher RBI single in the Cubs' 6th inning extended their lead to 26-9.

The Phillies would be held scoreless in the 6th and 7th innings.  But that would change in the 8th inning.

Uel Eubanks took over for Stueland on the mound for the Cubs in the top of the 8th inning.

Cliff Lee, who replaced Leslie at first base, walked to lead-off the inning.  Catcher Frank Withrow reached on an error before Weinert helped himself out with the bat by singling in Lee for their first run of the inning.  After Wrightstone walked, Parkinson hit a sacrifice fly to score Withrow to make it 26-11.  Bevo LeBourveau then singled in Weinert for another run.  After a Walker sacrifice, and Mokan walked to load the bases, Jimmy Smith reached on a bases loaded error by Heathcote that allowed Wrightstone and LeBourveau to score to keep the Phillies inning alive.  Lee then singled in his second at-bat of the inning off of Eubanks.

Eubanks would be replaced on the mound by Ed Morris.  For Eubanks, it would be the last time he'd ever play in a Major League game.

Withrow greeted Morris rudely with a bases-clearing double that made the score 26-17.  Morris struck out Weinert to end the inning.  In all, the Phillies scored 8 runs on only four hits in the inning.  Only two runs were earned.

The Cubs had the bases loaded in the 8th inning, but Callaghan hit into a 6-4-3(shortstop to second base to first base) double play to end the frame for them.

The Phillies weren't done scoring just yet.

Philadelphia got their first run in the top of the 9th inning on an RBI single from LeBourveau to score Wrightstone.  Walker followed that up with a run-scoring double allowing Parkinson to come in to score.  Morris was then replaced by Tiny Osborne on the mound for the Cubs.

Mokan was the first batter Osborne faced, and he struck him out.  But Jimmy Smith singled in LeBourveau and Walker to make it 26-21.  Osborn struck out Withrow for the second out of the inning before Lee singled and pinch-hitter Goldie Rapp walked.  In his second at-bat of the inning, Wrightstone singled again to drive in Jimmy Smith.  The game should've ended when O'Farrell's replacement at catcher, future Baseball Hall of Famer Gabby Hartnett, made a throwing error on a pick-off attempt that allowed Lee to score.  Parkinson then walked to load the bases.

Amazingly after trailing 26-9 in the game, the Phillies had the tying run at the plate with LeBourveau coming up.  But Osborne struck him out to end the game, and preserve the once insurmountable lead for the Cubs.  The Cubs won it 26-23.

The winning pitcher was Kauffman to bring his record to 7-8.  He gave up six runs(three earned) on nine hits in four innings.  That would be the last win he would get that season.  He would go on to win 64 games in his career.

Osborne is now credited with a save since it was not an official statistic at the time this game was played.  He struck out the side, but gave up two earned runs on three hits in the 9th inning.

Ring took the loss for the Phillies as his record went to 11-12 on the season.  He went 3.1 innings giving up 16 runs(only six earned), 12 hits, two homers, five walks, and striking out two.  Weinert went 4.2 innings while giving up 10 runs(eight earned) on 13 hits and five walks.

Hack Miller was the leading batter in the game going 4-for-5 with two homers, six RBI, three runs scored, and a walk.  He was known for his strength, and it was once said he could hammer nails into two inch planks of wood with his bare hands.  Although he had legendary strength, he struggled to maintain his weight and was out of MLB by 1925.  However in 1922, he had a strong season as he finished third in the league in batting average at .352.  His nickname was passed off to future Cubs legend Hack Wilson in 1924 when he was entering the league as a rookie.  Wilson would become most famous for setting a single season record of 191 RBI in 1930.

Hollocher went 3-for-5 with six RBI in the game.  He batted .340 and had 201 hits that year, but was out of MLB himself in 1924.

Heathcote went a perfect 5-for-5 for the Cubs and scored five runs in the game.  He came over to the Cubs from the Cardinals during the season.  He would spend the next seven years in Chicago and retire from the game in 1932.

Krug had four hits and four runs scored for the Cubs.  It would be the only 4-hit game of his career.  He wouldn't play another MLB season after 1922.

O'Farrell, who hit a homer in this game, remained the Cubs starting catcher until an injury in 1924.  He would end up in St. Louis in 1925 and serve as a backup catcher the remainder of his career.  Hartnett would take over the starting role in 1924 and go on to become the NL's best catcher.  He would play in four World Series and become a Baseball Hall of Famer in 1955.  To date, he's the only player from this game that's in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

The top batter for the Phillies was Wrightstone, who went 4-for-7 with a triple, four RBI, and three runs scored in the game.  He would bat .297 in nine years played before retiring in 1928.

Cliff Lee went 3-for-4 with four runs scored in the game.  He remained in Philadelphia until 1924 when he was sent to Cincinnati.  He finished his career in Cleveland and retired from the game in 1926.

Walker went 4-for-6 with an RBI and two runs scored.  This was his best season in Philadelphia after batting .337 with 196 hits, 102 runs scored, and 59 extra base hits.  He would also end up in Cincinnati in 1924, and play there for the remainder of his career that ended in 1930.

Records were set for the most runs scored with 49 and hits in a 9-inning game with 51.  Callaghan pulled off a rare feat in the game's history by batting three times in one inning when the Cubs scored 14 runs in the 4th inning.  Both teams also combined to have nine errors that played a factor in 21 unearned runs being scored in the game.  It should also be noted that even in a time when MLB just hit the Live Ball Era, Philadelphia scored all 23 of their runs without the benefit of a homer and had just six extra base hits in the game.  The Cubs scored their 26 runs on 11 extra base hits that included three homers.

Neither team saved enough runs for the following game they played.

Both teams battled to a scoreless tie that went into extra innings.  The Phillies scored three in the top of the 11th inning and won 3-0 the following day.

The Phillies would remain in seventh place in the NL standings with a 57-96 mark.

The Cubs stayed in the race and were as close as five games out of first at the end of the month.  But they slumped in the last month of the season and finished 80-74 and 13 games behind the Giants in fifth place in the standings.

57 years later, the two teams played a game that was strikingly similar to this one on the scoreboard, but with different results.  It also happened at Wrigley Field.

On May 17, 1979, the Phillies jumped out to a huge lead only to see the Cubs tie it at 22-22 to send the game to extra innings.  The Phillies got a solo homer from Mike Schmidt in the top of the 10th inning that helped them hold on to win 23-22.

Both teams have played two of the wildest and highest-scoring contests in the game's history.  But no other game in terms of scoring has topped this one.  In a game that took only three hours to complete, it was filled with offense and sloppy play from pitchers and in the field.  This August game between the two was one for the record books, and for those that love a lot of offense.

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Tony Conigliaro Beanball Tragedy in 1967

On August 18, 1967, one of the most tragic moments in baseball and sports history took place.  It was on this day that Boston Red Sox star Tony Conigliaro was hit in the face by a pitch that forever changed his promising career and life.  Conigliaro was hit in the face by California Angels pitcher Jack Hamilton in the 4th inning of a game at Fenway Park.  Conigliaro suffered a broken left cheekbone, dislocated jaw, and severe damage to his left retina as a result of the pitch.

Conigliaro was born in nearby Revere, MA in 1945, and graduated from St. Mary's High School in Lynn in 1962.  After graduation, he was signed by the Red Sox before spending a year in the minor leagues in 1963 at Wellsville out of the New York/Penn League.  At Wellsville, he batted .363 with 24 homers and 74 RBIs.

He was called up to play for the Red Sox in 1964.  In his rookie year, Conigliaro batted .290 with 24 homers and 52 RBIs in 111 games.  On the first pitch he seen at Fenway Park, he homered over the Green Monster.  But he missed the whole month of August due to a broken arm.

In his sophomore season, he batted .269 with a league-leading 32 home runs as well as 82 RBIs.  He became the youngest player in American League history to win a home run title that year.  He was also hit on the wrist by a pitch in a game on July 28 against the Kansas City Athletics by pitcher Wes Stock that caused him to miss 24 games.

He hit .265 with 28 home runs and 93 RBIs in 1966.

Despite his numbers in his first three seasons, he wasn't able to help the Red Sox in the AL standings.

The last time the Red Sox had a winning record was in 1958, and they were seven years removed from when the iconic Ted Williams retired in Boston from the game in 1960.  They reached a low point by losing 100 games in 1965.  They finished 9th out of 10 teams in the AL standings for two seasons in a row in 1965-66.

Boston hung around the .500 mark for first half of the 1967 season, but still was within striking distance of first place in the AL standings.  At one point in early July, the team lost five games in a row and were seven games out of first place.

But the Red Sox got on a hot streak in the middle of the month when they won ten games in a row to get within a half game of first place.

"The Impossible Dream" was alive in Boston.

On July 23, the Red Sox swept a doubleheader against the Cleveland Indians to win their tenth game in a row.  In that doubleheader, Conigliaro hit career homers No. 100 and 101.  At aged 22, he became the youngest player to reach 100 career home runs.

Conigliaro was off to another strong season in 1967, and was batting .287 with 20 homers and 67 RBIs by the time August 18th came around.  The Red Sox fell to fourth place and 3.5 games behind the Minnesota Twins when the Angels came to town for the first game of a four-game series with a record of 62-54.

The Angels were also alive in the AL pennant race with a record of 62-56 and 4.5 games out of first place by the time they came to Fenway Park for a critical four-game set.

The Angels started Jack Hamilton on the mound against Red Sox starter Gary Bell.  Hamilton, with a record of 8-2 going into the contest, had just been traded by the New York Mets to the Angels in June.  Bell, who was 7-10 at that point, was also traded in June when Cleveland traded him to the Red Sox.

In his first at-bat, Conigliaro singled off of Hamilton in the 2nd inning, but was left stranded at first base.

In a scoreless game in the bottom of the 4th inning with two outs, Conigliaro was faced Hamilton again when the tragic moment occurred.

In the at-bat, a Hamilton fastball struck Conigliaro on his left cheekbone.  The pitch broke his cheekbone, dislocated his jaw, and damaged his retina.  He laid on the ground for several minutes as fans were in awe of what they were witnessing.  In seconds, blood had spilled out of his mouth, ear, and nose.  He was wearing a batting helmet that didn't have the protective ear flap on it.

Hamilton was on his way towards home plate to check on him until his catcher Buck Rodgers stopped him in his tracks before he could get a glimpse of the damage the pitch caused to Conigliaro.

It was the only batter Hamilton hit in the American League that year.  But that pitch almost killed Conigliaro.

Nearly 47 years ago to the day(August 16, 1920 to be exact), Indians shortstop Ray Chapman was struck in the face on a pitch by Yankees pitcher Carl Mays.  He died 12 hours later on August 17 in the hospital.

Conigliaro was carried off the field on a stretcher, and the image of him with a swollen eye made the cover of Sports illustrated later on.  It's one of the most vivid covers in SI history.

Conigliaro would miss the remainder of the 1967 season and all of 1968 due to the injury.

Meanwhile in the game, Jose Tartabull replaced Conigliaro as the pinch-runner and scored on a triple by Rico Petrocelli.  Petrocelli also scored on error on the play to give the Red Sox a 2-0 lead.

Gary Bell added a RBI single to extend the lead to 3-0.  Jimmie Hall hit a pair of solo homers late in the game, but Boston held on to win 3-2.  Bell won his eighth game on the season and Hamilton's record went to 8-3.

The win started a seven-game winning streak that vaulted the Red Sox into the first place in the AL standings.

On the heels of Carl Yastrzemski's MVP and triple crown winning season, the Red Sox kept the "Impossible Dream" alive in the absence of their injured star.

On the last day of the season, Boston defeated Minnesota to clinch the AL pennant and advance to the World Series to face the St. Louis Cardinals.

The Red Sox forced a Game 7 against the Cardinals, but ultimately lost in the deciding game to St. Louis in the World Series.  Some experts think if Conigliaro had been healthy, the Red Sox would've won the World Series that year.

The Red Sox would have a winning record for the next several years, but wouldn't make it back to the World Series again until 1975.

It was thought that Conigliaro's career was over after the pitch that injured him.  But his vision improved in 1968, and he played in the Winter Instructional League in Sarasota, FL as part of his rehab.

Miraculously, he would make a triumphant return to the field and to the Red Sox in 1969.

On Opening Day, Conigliaro hit a 2-run homer in the top of the 10th inning to give the Red Sox a lead over the Baltimore Orioles.  After Frank Robinson's 2-run shot tied it in the bottom of the 10th inning, Conigliaro scored the game-winning run in the top of the 12th inning as the Red Sox won 5-4.

Conigliaro faced Hamilton on April 11 when the Red Sox played the Indians in Cleveland.  Hamilton, who was traded to Cleveland in the off-season, came in out of the bullpen as the game went into extra innings.  In their first meeting, Conigliaro bunted for a sacrifice and then lined out in his second at-bat against Hamilton.  The Red Sox won 3-2 in 16 innings.

On April 20, the two faced each other again.  Conigliaro hit a RBI single off of Hamilton in the 4th inning and grounded out in his other two at-bats against him.  The Red Sox won again 9-4.

Conigliaro went 1-for-5 with a RBI against Hamilton in his return in 1969.

Later, Hamilton would be traded to the White Sox during the season, and he would retire from the game that August.

Conigliaro went on to hit .255 with 20 homers and 82 RBIs in 1969.

He followed that up by having the best statistical season of his career in 1970 by batting .266 with 36 homers and 116 RBIs.

But after the 1970 season, he was traded to the very team he had suffered the near career and life-threatening injury against:  the Angels.

However, returning vision problems caused him to retire from the game during the season.  He would return for one more run four years later during a season in which the Red Sox would return to the playoffs in 1975.  But it was clear his playing days were done, and he retired again for good in August.  He grounded out in his very last at-bat on June 12 against the Chicago White Sox.

After retirement, Conigliaro found work as a sportscaster in Rhode Island and later on KGO-TV out of San Francisco.

He was considered the front-runner to the Red Sox commentating job in 1982.  But tragedy struck him again when he suffered a heart attack on January 9 when he was on his way to the airport.  He lived with his brother and former big league player Billy as he was in his care after the heart attack.  The hospital bills piled up on him over the rest of his life.

On February 24, 1990, Conigliaro died at the age of 45 as a result of kidney failure and pneumonia.

Since his death, the Red Sox have made sure they honored their former star player.

In 1990, the Red Sox instituted the Tony Conigliaro Award.  The award is given annually to the player who best "overcomes an obstacle and adversity through the attributes of spirit, determination, and courage that were trademarks of Conigliaro."  The Conigliaro family presents the award every January in Boston.  Ironically, Dickie Thon, the second winner of the Tony Conigliaro Award in 1991, was also beaned in the face by a pitch in 1984 that changed his career forever.

In 2007, the Red Sox added a 200-seat bleacher section on the right field roof that was called Conigliaro's Corner in honor of him.  The seats were eventually removed.  However, the blocked off seats in center field that Conigliaro had trouble seeing the ball from was originally "Conigliaro's Corner".

As for Hamilton, he lives in Branson, Missouri with his wife these days.  He has owned restaurants in Branson since retiring from the game.

This August day in 1967 is one Boston would like to forget in a season of the "Impossible Dream".  Everybody in Boston knows the story of the man they called "Tony C."  He was on his way to becoming one of the greatest players in the game's history until this tragic day put a halt to it.  Both Hamilton and Conigliaro will forever be synonymous with one another for this day in history.  It is a day that Boston and its fans will never forget.

Here's a video from the MLB Network hosted by Bob Costas that remembers Tony Conigliaro:

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Patricia Palinkas is First Woman to Play Pro Football in 1970

On August 15, 1970, Patricia Palinkas becomes the first woman to play in an American professional football game.  It was on this day that Palinkas, playing for the Orlando Panthers in the Atlantic Coast Football League, came into the game as a holder for a her husband and placekicker, Steve Palinkas.  The Orlando Panthers were playing the Bridgeport Jets as a crowd of about 12,000 fans were in attendance to witness history in the making.

Pat Palinkas was born Patricia Barezi in 1943, and she graduated from Northern Illinois University.  She became a school teacher, and taught at the Defense Department when her husband Steve was a lieutenant in the infantry.  At the time of her eventual tryout, she was a teacher at Williams Elementary School in Tampa.

Steve Palinkas was also born in 1943, and had one-time aspirations of playing in the National Football League.  He was a kicker while serving in the infantry, and was given a suggestion to play minor league football to gain experience.  He chose to give the Orlando Panthers a shot.  He attended Tampa University.

In 1969, the two married in Germany.  The following year, the setup for Patricia to become the first woman to play in a pro football game was orchestrated.

The original holder was supposed to be Don Denton, but his class schedule changed at Tampa so he couldn't try out for the team.  Steve suggested to coach Massey about giving his wife a shot at being the new holder for him.

They both were invited to tryout.  She wore No. 3 as her uniform number and weighed all of 122 pounds at the time of her playing days.

The Orlando Panthers were originally the Patterson Miners that debuted in the Atlantic Coast Football League.  They moved to become the Newark Bears the following year while also playing under former Pro Football Hall of Fame player Steve Van Buren, who coached there for three seasons.  They won the ACFL championship in their first year at Newark.  They moved to the Continental Football League in 1965, and the following year to Orlando to become the Panthers.  They won back-to-back CFL titles in 1967-68.

Despite the success the franchise had, financial troubles plagued them throughout their tenure in the CFL.  They jumped back to the ACFL in 1970 in hopes of turning their financial difficulties around in the process.

Most players made $25 per preseason game, and $100 for regular season games in the Atlantic Coast Football League.  So it wasn't going to make anyone rich, and thus, why Pat kept her job as a school teacher while playing.

Days before training camp, Steve Palinkas made the suggestion to Massey to bring Pat to camp to tryout as his holder.

Due to the financially strapped franchise's situation, one can't blame Massey for taking Steve's suggestion.  Massey seen her as draw for fans.

The move garnered so many headlines that CBS decided to have her wired for sound in the team's first game against Bridgeport in hopes she would make history.

She did, and a story was filmed of that moment that would be narrated by CBS' own legendary Walter Cronkite.

The game took place at the Tangerine Bowl, which was home of the Orlando Panthers at the time.  A crowd of about 12,000 fans came out to the game.

The game went along into the first half as those in attendance began to wonder if they would see Pat come into the game.

With a few seconds remaining before halftime, Orlando scored on a short touchdown run.

Onto the field came Pat as the public address announcer made sure everyone knew she was in the game.  The crowd cheered as she ran onto the field.

On the snap, she fumbled the ball and took a big hit from linebacker Wally Florence.

The extra point had failed.

But Pat made history despite the fail attempt as she shook off the hit from Florence.

"I tried to break her neck," Florence said. "I don't know what she's trying to prove.  I'm out here trying to make a living and she's out prancing around making folly with a man's game."

Pat felt bad for fumbling the snap, and was nearly in tears over it on the sidelines.  But Massey assured her that she'd get another chance in the game.

In the third quarter, the Panthers scored another touchdown on a short pass in the left corner of the end zone.

Palinkas got another extra point attempt and a shot at redemption.

On the ensuing extra point, Palinkas' hold was perfect for her husband and Orlando.

The Panthers scored one more touchdown on a roll-out pass in the fourth quarter, which brought her into the game one more time.

Before the snap on the extra point attempt, Palinkas said to her husband, "You ready, honey?"  Those words are unlikely to have never been said on a football field during a men's game before.

Nonetheless, the third extra point attempt was successful and the perky Palinkas ran off the field happy with her performance.  After that extra point, she could be heard saying, "Two out of three.  Not bad, not bad at all.  I love football."

Orlando went on to win the game 26-7 over Bridgeport.

Her participation in this game as the first professional female player in a male football league drew her instant fame.  This meant television and personal appearances were about to come her way.

She became an overnight celebrity.

She made appearances on The Tonight Show, The Merv Griffin Show, and What's My Line.  According to Patricia, she had up to 20 interviews in a day after becoming the first female to play in a pro football game.

However, few financial rewards would come her way as a result of the instant fame.

She would be the holder for Steve in the following game, and they made one successful extra point attempt in a 23-14 loss to Norfolk.  Early in that game, the crowd booed Massey for not using Steve and Pat on a field goal attempt.  That kick missed.  But after the Panthers tied the game 6-6, the duo converted their only successful point after attempt.

In the last preseason game against the Indianapolis Capitols, they had an extra point attempt blocked.

That would be the last time the couple would see the field together in a pro football game.

Later in the game, Pat held the ball on a successful extra point attempt for new placekicker, Ron Miller.

In the last cuts before the start of the ACFL season, Steve was injured and was cut while Miller won the job as the team's placekicker.  Eventually, Miller would be released himself in October in favor of new kicker Skip Butler.

Pat survived the last cut, and was to be the holder for Miller that season.

But two weeks later on September 3, Palinkas was suspended by Massey for missing practices due to all her appearances and full-time job as an elementary school teacher.

This, along with her husband Steve getting injured and later released before the first regular season game, was the end for her football career.

The couple eventually returned to their home in Tampa, FL to start a family.  The couple would have three children.

Pat continued her career after her 15 minutes of fame as a first grade and kindergarten teacher.  In 1992, she was named Teacher of the Year at Dunedin Elementary(FL).

Pat received a number of gifts from fans because of her football career, but none were more memorable to her than a bronze jockstrap. She kept a number of newspaper clippings from her playing days as well.

As for Steve, he went on to become a salesman.  At one time in the mid-1970s, he was a marketing director for Suddath Van Lines.

The Orlando Panthers continued to have financial trouble as some players quit due to unpaid wages, and a lawsuit that was filed by the league for them not paying their dues.  ACFL suspended the franchise after the 1970 season, and they never played again.

Despite a few women playing collegiate football in the 1990s, it would be another forty years before another would play professionally.

In 2010, Katie Hnida became the placekicker for the Fort Wayne Firehawks from the Continental Indoor Football League.  She played in three games before being released due to a developing blood clot in her leg.  Hnida was the first woman to play Division 1-A football, and the first to score in a game when she did so for the New Mexico Lobos in 2003.

Although her career as a football player seemingly ended before it started, Patricia Palinkas will always be remembered as the first woman to play in an American professional football game.  Her and Steve are also the only couple to play on the field at the same time.  This day in 1970 was certainly a landmark moment in professional football and sports.

Here's that video of this game that was narrated by Walter Cronkite:

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