Love story begins with one Super Bowl, continues at another

Daisy Sudano and Jim Pellegrini

Daisy Sudano and Jim Pellegrini are planning to get married now that the Ravens are in the Super Bowl. (Algerina Perna, Baltimore Sun / January 22, 2013)

Jim had to run a vehicle up to Rochester, N.Y. immediately after the game. Daisy went along for the ride.

"We're not even in Towson," Jim recalled. "And we both looked at each other and said: 'This is the year we're getting married!'"

But there was one more hurdle to overcome, of course. To get to the Super Bowl, the Ravens would have to beat the Patriots, in a re-match of last year's AFC Championship at Gillette Stadium.

Jim and Daisy watched the game at Sam Sudano's house in Severna Park. It was Daisy's 44th birthday. She and Jim arrived in a great mood.

But watching the pre-game chatter on CBS was an instant bummer.

"Every sportscaster was (picking) against the Ravens," Sam Sudano recalled. "Daisy kept shaking her head and saying: 'Boy, it doesn't look too good."

Yet by the middle of the fourth quarter, the Ravens had scored 21 straight points and were in control, shocking the national pundits. As the clock ticked down, everyone in the Sudano house began to celebrate. But not Daisy.

"No, no, anything can happen," she kept saying. "This is Brady. When it's under two minutes, I'll believe."

But with 1:06 remaining, Ravens cornerback intercepted a Brady pass in the end zone to put the dagger to the Patriots and seal the Ravens' 28-13 win.

"I shot her a text with the 'Wedding March,'" said Daisy's older sister, Helen Smith. "And I asked: 'Is Jim sweating yet?'"

The answer was no.

"We looked at each other with tears in our eyes," Daisy said. "And we hugged and kissed and said: 'Finally.'"

Now they're making plans for New Orleans and a wedding that's been on hold for a good part of the past 12 years. It'll be just the two of them, no family, no friends, but they're fine with that.

"We're not big wedding people," Daisy said. They'll be married in a French Quarter restaurant and the ceremony will be carried live on 98-Rock, the FM radio station here in Charm City.

For these two die-hard Ravens fans, maybe the best news is this: a Baltimore car dealership has given them two tickets to the Super Bowl as a wedding gift.

They say they plan to scream themselves hoarse, just like they did on that long-ago night at Bohager's.

Kevin.cowherd@baltsun.com

Twitter.com/kevincowherdsun

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