It was a big weekend for Dawson County basketball as every level of the program, aside from the varsity teams, put the finishing touches on the 2018-2019 calendar.
The action started on Jan. 24 when the Dawson County Tigers ninth graders, playing in their inaugural season, hosted the ninth graders from Johnson County for the final game of the year for both teams.
After a close first period, the Tigers pulled ahead heading into halftime and extended their lead over the second half to close out the season with a 57-26 victory. The win gave the Tigers a final record of 7-2 and set the standard for future teams, according to first-year Head Coach Will Anglin.
“All year long I stressed the importance of playing hard no matter what the situation. They really bought into that,” Anglin said. “Every single game every one of them gave 110 percent, which is all a coach can really ask for.”
The Dawson County eighth graders played in the Mountain League Tournament hosted by Dawson County Middle School on Jan. 26. After getting past Lumpkin and Pickens County in the first two rounds, the Tigers came up short by a score of 57-41 against White County to finish the season as the Mountain League runners-up.
The loss marked a heartbreaking end to a season that saw the team post an 11-4 record while beating local rival Lumpkin County by double digits in all three meetings during the season. Head Coach Judd Gravitt had nothing but praise for his team after such a strong season.
“Our strength was our togetherness and toughness. An all-out effort from every player, every game,” Gravitt said. “I feel that his group will have several players make a positive impact at the high school, whether it be basketball, other sports or academics.”
Also taking place on Jan. 25, the junior varsity Tigers hosted the JV Tiger Invitational Tournament at Dawson County High School. The Tigers advanced to the championship game after overcoming a 13-point deficit against White County in the second round only to fall against the Habersham Raiders by a final score of 49-46.
Although the invitational marked the end of the championship race for the junior varsity Tigers, the team still has games left to be played and they were back in action against the Cherokee Bluff Bears on Jan. 28. Results were unavailable as of press time.