Home Field Advantage

Berry welcomed more than 4,500 students, alumni, family and friends for the inaugural football game Sept. 12 at Valhalla. 

This is the third season for Berry football, but the first time the Vikings have a permanent field to call home. Valhalla was named by lead donor Steve Cage in honor of the Great Hall of Viking warriors and dedicated to Berry College President Steve Briggs.  

The crisp clear day began with student tailgating in the “Shipyard,” and a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Valhalla archway. President Briggs, Mr. Cage, and Student Government Association President Ree Palmer spoke about the upcoming year of excitement for the Vikings. The football team then made their first ceremonial Viking Walk  through campus with the Berry Drumline and cheerleaders.  

By game time, the stadium was standing room only.

The game kept fans on the edge of their seats as the Vikings fought not only to the end of regulation time but  into overtime against LaGrange College. The game was won with a final field goal by junior Mitchell Blanchard.

“I loved how everyone came together and showed incredible school spirit and unified as a school!” said freshman Porter Wilbanks, of  Waleska, Ga.  

After the Vikings stormed the field, everyone joined together to sing the alma mater followed by celebratory fireworks. 

“The first-ever game at Valhalla was incredible,” said Will Kenworthy, a freshman kicker from Tucker, Ga. “I don’t think that it could’ve been a more perfect night to show Berry what the football team is all about.”  

The Vikings next home game is 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19 against Rhodes. 

Written by Student Public Relations Assistant Alexi Bell. Photos by student photographers Sara Leimbach, Lauren Hunter, Shannon Bostic, Sydney Romer and Lauren Neumann.