Virginia Union University Claims 2023 CIAA Football Championship

Salem, VA (November 11, 2023) - The Fayetteville State University Broncos and the Virginia Union University Panthers put on an exciting display of CIAA football for the 2023 Conference Championship. While the back-and-forth battle was filled with countless show-stopping moments, ultimately Virginia Union emerged victorious and were crowned the 2023 CIAA Conference Champions.   

The first half of the championship clash lived up to its billing, with both teams showcasing exceptional defense. Virginia Union would find the endzone first, with touchdowns by Jada Byers and Christian Reid, giving the Panthers a 14-0 lead. With one minute remaining, Fayetteville State responded with a touchdown of their own, tightening the score at 14-7. The electrifying 91-yard kick return by Barry Elliot brought the crowd to their feet and set the stage for an exciting 2nd half.  

The 3rd quarter opened with Demari Daniels completing a 64-yard pass to Kameron King, but the Broncos offense stalled out settling for a 20-yard field goal by Jacob Meneses. Momentum swung in Virginia Union's favor shortly after a muffed punt by the Broncos. The Panthers then went on a five play 27 yard drive leading to yet another Byers touchdown. The Panthers defense continued to shut out the Broncos offense during the 4th quarter forcing a fumble recovered by Shemar Graham. Virginia Union’s rushing game continued to shine as Jada Byers finished with 135 yards and two touchdowns on the day. The game would conclude 21-10, Panthers. Byers also went home as the 2023 Food Lion Most Valuable Player for Virginia Union. 

This evening's win serves as the first Championship Title for Head Coach and 2023 CIAA Coach of the Year, Dr. Alvin Parker. It also serves as the first title win for Virginia Union University since 2001. Both teams now await bids for the NCAA Division II Playoffs. The Division II selection show will be streamed live at 6PM EST Tomorrow.  

Related Stories

Related Videos