As many of the winter high school sports begin to wind down, the Dawson County High School boys baseball team is preparing to take center stage. With a loaded schedule ahead, the players have high expectations for the 2018 season.
"Our goal every year is to win a regional or state championship,” said Head Coach Dwayne Sapp.
Despite having three returning seniors with three years of starting experience, many new players without Varsity experience are joining the Tigers' ranks. While the raw talent is there, given the competitiveness of the high school leagues, experience counts.
The young Tigers will need to rely on the returning seniors for leadership.
In an effort to prepare for the season, beginning with an upcoming away game against Riverwood on Feb. 8, the Tigers have been emphasizing fundamentals during practice. Sapp said that the easiest way to lose a game is to beat yourself with mistakes.
While the old adage remains true that perfect practice makes perfect, the Tigers will only be able to combat their biggest weakness, a lack of experience, by playing good teams under pressure.
Given the very rigorous and busy schedule ahead of them, the Tigers are sure to gain the necessary experience they seek. As Dawson County has proved to be a formidable opponent in recent years, finding legitimate programs with the guts to take on the Tigers has become a scheduling challenge.
As a result, this year the Tigers schedule will feature a wide range of opponents, including former state champions and 7-A schools. The Tigers certainly hope that the strength of their schedule will end up serving them well in regional and state level play.
Next week, Dawson will begin facing some of its non-regional opponents on the road. On Feb. 13, Dawson will travel to play Athens Christian, and on Feb. 17, the Tigers will travel to Brunswick to play Savannah Christian.
In addition to holding their regular practice last week, the Tigers hosted a baseball camp for youth in the community.
The camp was coached by the high school players and focused on teaching the youngsters fundamentals. Camp took place at the high school on Feb. 3, but will be offered again from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Feb. 10.
2018 Varsity Baseball Schedule
Feb. 8 @Riverwood 5:30 p.m.
Feb. 13 @Athens Christian 5:55 p.m.
Feb. 17 @Savannah Christian 1:00 p.m.
Feb. 17 @Pike Co 4 p.m.
Feb. 20 Riverwood 5:55
Feb. 22 North Forsyth 5:55 p.m.
Feb. 23 Alpharetta 5:55 p.m.
Feb. 26 Riverside Military @ North Georgia 5:30 p.m.
March 1 Athens Christian 5:55 p.m.
March 2 Prince Ave 5:55 p.m.
March 6 @Fannin Co 5:55 p.m.
March 9 Fannin Co (DH) 5:00 p.m. and 7 p.m.
March 12 @Greater Atlanta Christian 5:55 p.m.
March 14 Greater Atlanta Christian 5:55 p.m.
March 16 @Greater Atlanta Christian 5:55 p.m.
March 19 Union Co 5:55 p.m.
March 21 @Union Co 5:55 p.m.
March 23 Union Co 5:55 p.m.
March 26 @Lumpkin Co 5:55 p.m.
March 28 Lumpkin Co 5:55 p.m.
March 30 @Lumpkin Co 5:55 p.m.
April 2 @West Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 4 West Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 6 @Alpharetta 5:55 p.m.
April 9 East Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 11 @East Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 13 East Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 16 @North Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 18 North Hall 5:55 p.m.
April 20 @North Hall 5:55 p.m.