SAN FRANCISCO - The San Francisco 49ers were lights-out in their return to prime time, riding their top-ranked run defense again and prevailing through a pair of power outages to beat ailing quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers 20-3 on Monday night.

Vernon Davis caught a 1-yard touchdown pass for the 49ers (11-3) one play after setting himself up with a 21-yard reception from Alex Smith, Frank Gore ran for a 5-yard score and David Akers kicked field goals of 22 and 38 yards to overtake Hall of Famer Jerry Rice for San Francisco's single-season scoring record.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

The Steelers (10-4) missed a key chance to take sole possession of first place in the AFC North and gain the AFC's No. 1 playoff seed.

Roethlisberger, playing on a sprained left ankle that had Big Ben in a walking boot during the week, threw two early interceptions and another in the waning minutes. Even all those Terrible Towel-waving Steelers supporters couldn't will their team when San Francisco's unique home-field advantage became two blackout delays.