The Dawson County High School varsity boys' basketball team picked up three wins last week including region wins over Lumpkin and Fannin counties.
"I was just proud we finally got over the top," said Head Coach Chad Pittman. "We have been in so many close games. We didn't do the things we needed to but it was enough to hold on and win."
During the Dec. 12 victory over the Indians, freshman Campbell Reed led with 12 points all from beyond the arc in the second quarter as the Tigers won 58-55.
Early baskets were tough to come by and then Kane Pelfrey scored on a fast break before getting the ball out to Ryan Gallenkamp on the next possession.
Gallenkamp was fouled and sunk both from the line.
Jeremiah Crumley was fouled on a three and completed the 4-point play from the line to put Dawson up 8-3 and prompt a timeout call by the Indians.
After the first quarter, the Tigers were leading 19-14.
In the second period, Cullen Reed worked around an Indian defender on a play that left the Lumpkin player on the ground.
Lumpkin fought back with two baskets to cut the lead to 1 point before Joseph Cronan dropped a three from the top.
Cullen Reed would finish the night with 12 points and Cronan with 10.
The Indians picked up one from the free throw line before Campbell Reed hit the first of his threes.
Fouls kept the Indians at the line and Lumpkin took the lead briefly with 3:16 in the first half.
Gallenkamp free throws put Dawson back up by one before Lumpkin responded with a basket down low and Campbell Reed hit back-to-back 3-pointers.
Campbell Reed's fourth 3-pointer came just before the half and Dawson led 39-30.
Out of the half, the Indians scored immediately and Crumley's three would not go, but Coey Watson picked up a basket from the top of the key.
The Tigers' lead went to 7 points with 3:40 left in the third.
Lumpkin picked up the pace and added pressure out of a Tiger timeout. The Indians scored after a steal and cut the lead to 2 points.
The Indians tied the game after Gallenkamp was called for a block despite the Tiger fans' assurances it was a charge against Lumpkin.
Watson had a beautiful feed underneath to Corey Hammond for a basket to take the lead back again.
Hammond added 2 more underneath and had a put back on a missed Watson shot. He also pulled down a big rebound and put in one of two from the line on the subsequent foul.
The Indians cut the lead to 2 points with 1:15 to play and Dawson turned the ball over before Lumpkin County was called on back-to-back travels.
Reed pulled down a rebound and was fouled as time expired. He went to the line with .7 seconds and hit one of two for the 58-55 win.
On Dec. 16, the team traveled to Fannin County where the Tigers won 52-44.
"It's a hard place to play," Pittman said.
Crumley came up with big free throws down the final stretch to seal the win according to Pittman.
Crumley led the scoring against the Rebels with 18 points on the night.
The Reed brothers helped out with Cullen adding 8 and Campbell scoring 7 points.
Watson contributed with eight assists, four steals, three rebounds and his traditionally tough defense.
That win took the team to 2-1 in region play.
On Dec. 17 the Tigers faced Jefferson on the road and came up with another win at 48-44.
"I didn't know how we'd respond, if we'd have anything left in the tank," Pittman said about the third game of the week.
In the non-region contest, Joseph Cronan put in 18 points with five rebounds and five assists against a bigger, more physical Jefferson squad.
Campbell Reed hit a three just before half to give the Tigers a 24-23 lead.
Campbell Reed added 9 points and Gallenkamp had another 7 points and 10 rebounds.
In the third, Dawson only put six points on the board off of two 3-point shots.
"It was like there was a lid on the basket," Pittman said.
Despite the shooting struggles in the third, the Tigers were only down by six points heading into the final period.
At that point, Crumley and Cullen Reed had not scored. The two would account for 14 of the 18 points in the last quarter.
The third win of the week took the Tigers to 6-5 overall.
The team played Habersham Central on Dec. 19 for the alumni night, but results weren't available as of press time.
Next week the Tigers will travel to Commerce for the 2016 Commerce Christmas Classic. Dawson County opens the tournament at 11:30 a.m. against Stephens County.