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Area players earn All-CIAA honors

CHARLOTTE – Former Bertie High and Elizabeth City State player Malcolm Cherry heads a list that includes seven members from Chowan University in being named to the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) 2016 All-CIAA Football Teams announced here Tuesday afternoon.

Cherry, a senior, made the All-CIAA First Team as a defensive back. The Lewiston native led the league in interceptions with four and collected 49 tackles – 43 solo – in 10 games for the Vikings which averaged out to nearly five per game.  Cherry also broke up 17 passes and three times made tackles for loss.  Elizabeth City State finished at 5-5 under first-year head coach Earnest Wilson.

Chowan’s Tyler Bembry, Donald Boone, Tyrone Carter, Randall Dixon, Demetrius Newberry, Vicente` Stafford, and  Nate Wyche were named to the All-CIAA Second Team with Ryan Nolan and Aaron Matthews grabbing Honorable Mention recognition.

Bembry competed in 10 games for the Hawks.  The Disputana, Virginia native notched 27 tackles over the course of the year (14 solo, 13 assisted) with 6.5 tackles for loss (24 yards), four sacks (10 yards) and one forced fumble. Boone garnered CIAA Player of the Week honors back on Oct. 17.  His efforts on the offensive line led to Chowan racking up 631 offensive yards in a 54-21 win over Virginia Union University.

Carter, a native of Raville, Louisiana led the CIAA with 1,099 receiving yards on the season.  He recorded 50 receptions with nine touchdowns for the Hawks.  Dixon completed 164 passes this season for a staggering 2,449 yards with 19 touchdowns on the year.  He also claimed the Chowan single-game passing record back on Oct. 15 when he completed 22-28 pass attempts for 412 yards in a 54-21 win over Virginia Union University.

Newberry, a senior from Brunswick, Georgia led Chowan’s defensive efforts this season as he tallied 81 tackles with 54 solo stops, 21.5 tackles for loss, six sacks, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble.  Stafford followed with 53 tackles this season (40 solo, 13 assisted).  The San Diego, CA native notched one interception along with two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble.

Wyche rounds out the list of All-CIAA Second team honors.  Over the course of eight games, Wyche notched 33 tackles with 24 solo stops on the season.  He recorded eight tackles for loss with seven sacks, two fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles.

Nolan earned a spot on the CIAA Honorable Mention Team after notching 106 rushing yards for two touchdowns and hauling in 50 receptions for 830 yards with four touchdowns.  The Brick, New Jersey native also threw three touchdown passes this season for the Chowan Blue and White.

Matthews, hailing from Hampton, Virginia collected 27 tackles (24 solo, three assisted) for the Hawks.  He recorded three tackles for loss, three interceptions, five pass breakups, and one fumble recovery.

The Chowan football team posted a 6-4 overall record and 4-3 mark in CIAA play.  The Hawks recorded a winning season for the second consecutive season; a first for the team in the NCAA Division II era.

These players will be recognized Saturday Nov. 12 in Salem, VA at the 2016 CIAA Football Championship game between Bowie State and Winston-Salem State Universities.