SAN ANTONIO, Texas – The Arlington Renegades triumphed over the DC Defenders in the XFL Championship Game, 35-26, capping the up-and-coming football league’s successful pilot season.
San Antonio’s Alamodome hosted the championship game on Saturday – the league’s first since its ill-fated debut in 2001.
FORMER DALLAS COWBOY SAYS HIS CURRENT XFL TEAM HAS ‘BEST RECIEVER ROOM I’VE BEEN IN’
DC was the odds-on favorite to win after closing out the regular season with a near-perfect record.
The team went undefeated at their home venue, Audi Field, where they beat the Seattle Sea Dragons 37-21 on April 30 in the North Division championship.
Arlington, by contrast, entered the game with a losing record of 5-6.
XFL ACCIDENTALLY SHOWS HALF-NAKED PLAYER ON BROADCAST
They snatched their spot against the Defenders after beating the Houston Renegades 26-11 on April 29 in the South Division championship.
XFL OFFICIALS PENALIZE PLAYER FOR SQUIRTING WATER AT DOWN JUDGE
The Arlington Renegades took an early lead with two touchdowns in the first half that went unanswered until the last two minutes before halftime.
Arlington entered the second half up 20-6 against DC before the Defenders quickly answered with a touchdown in the beginning of the third quarter.
THE ROCK SURPRISES FAN WITH PICTURE AFTER SHE WAITED FOR NEARLY 3 HOURS: ‘I JUST DON’T BELIEVE IT’
The teams traded touchdowns at a more rapid clip, rounding out the third quarter with Arlington still leading 32-20.
The fourth quarter saw the Defenders come within a single score of the Renegades, but a Jordan Ta’amu pass fluttered into the hands of a Renegade for the third time Saturday night to extinguish the Defenders’ dying breath of a comeback.
Arlington won with a final score of 35-26, prompting a flurry of lemons thrown onto the field by DC fans – a tradition established early at Defenders home games that has frustrated league officials since the beginning of the season.
The success of the 2023 XFL season is good news for spring football fans as the league looks ahead to future seasons amid unprecedented success for a football franchise other than the National Football League.
XFL Commissioner Dwayne Johnson was in attendance for the event, celebrating the league’s rising prominence.
Later in the game, Johnson surprised fans from his luxury box seats via the jumbotron, urging attendees to participate in the game’s “Flex Cam” while showing off his own muscles.
The XFL announced an official attendance of 22,754 fans.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
The Arlington Renegades are now the first XFL champions since 2001’s Los Angeles Xtreme.
The league is already making preparations for its next season, though expansions into new cities are not expected until at least 2025.