After a five-game road trip that saw the Dawson County volleyball team sweep 10 straight sets to post a 5-0 season record, the Lady Tigers finally got a chance to play before the home crowd at “the Ford” Aug. 13 in a tri-match featuring the Jackson County Panthers and the Pinecrest Academy Paladins.
With a first set 25-17 victory, the Lady Tigers extended their winning streak to 11 straight sets, but Jackson County rallied to win the match by a final score of 2-1 and brought a small dose of reality to the 2019 season, handing the squad their first loss of the year.
Led by senior Marlie Townley’s 14 kills at the net, Dawson County rallied to defeat the Paladins in straight sets in the second match of the night showing a resilience that was cause for excitement from Head Coach Tanya Porter.
“While I am never excited about losing,” Porter said. “I have to be happy with how we competed and how we worked to get better.”
The Lady Tigers were immediately back on the road Aug 15. as the team headed to Rabun County for a pair of matches that pitted them against their toughest opponents thus far, the No. 6 ranked Wildcats, and the West Hall Lady Spartans.
Behind the powerful serve of senior Chloe Bennet and a heads-up performance from junior Haylie Selzer, Dawson County humbled the Wildcats in straight sets, 25-18 and 25-19. Unfortunately, a come from behind win by a determined squad of Spartans put the Lady Tigers on the wrong side of the scoreboard for the second time this year and Dawson County ended the evening 1 – 1.
“While we are playing well, there is still room for improvement,” Porter said. “We are still playing with our lineup to give us the greatest chance of success.”
Aug. 17’s Coal Mountain Classic wrapped up the second full week of the season with four games against schools from across north Georgia including White County, Creekview, area 7-A powerhouses North Forsyth and Mountain View.
Dawson County continued to struggle in longer matches as each of the first three matches went the full three sets, and all three resulted in a losses, but the team showed their resilience once more as they rose up to defeat Mountain View in straight sets, ending the Classic on a positive note and extending the season record to 8 – 5.
“Currently we are 0-4 in matches that have gone three sets,” Porter said. “In fact, of our five losses, four of them have been three set losses. We really need to find ways to win those lengthy games.”
The Lady Tigers remained on the road to kick-off the third week of the year as they visited White County for a rematch with the Lady Warriors and the Lady Spartans on Aug. 20. Results were unavailable as of press time.