As the Dawson County varsity boys basketball team emerges from the holiday break into 2013, one thing is certain.
The Tigers will have a more difficult time surprising teams this season the same way they did last year.
It was a story that Dawson fans will remember for a long timetheir Tigers coming out of nowhere and taking Region 8A-AA by storm to win the Region Championship and advance to the State Elite 8.
But this season has brought a move up to 7-AAA and a slew of challenging region opponents to deal with.
To get things started this Friday, the Tigers will travel to East Hall to battle a team that is accustomed to success on the hardwood in recent years.
The Vikings finished 22-8 last year after advancing to the second round of the State Playoffs.
Dawson will be looking for just its second win in the past nine games against East Hall.
Then this Tuesday, the Tigers will host a highly-anticipated rematch with Buford, the team they upset in the State Sweet 16 last year, causing Dawson fans to rush onto the court in celebration of the victory.
The Wolves have begun this season by challenging themselves with many tough non-region matchups and will be a serious force in the region.
The excitement doesnt stop there as Dawson must then travel to North Hall on Friday, Jan. 11.
After finishing atop Region 8A-AAA last year with an overall record of 24-6, the Trojans will be looking to continue their early-season success.
Finally, Dawson will host West Hall on Tuesday, Jan. 15.
After finishing 11-14 last year, the Spartans jumped out to a 6-3 start this season including wins against White County and Flowery Branch.