After a week off for spring break, Dawson County spring sports will continue their quest for a play-off birth in each respective sport.
Although some coaches argue that having a week off gets you out of the “swing” of things, others contend that it is a well-deserved break.
“We needed the time off before our guys start on the last part of our schedule,” Dawson County High School Varsity Baseball Coach Jimmy Pruett said.
In past seasons, players would forfeit their spring breaks in order to play, but no games were scheduled last week. It gave time for competitors to take some time off.
To stay in shape, some teams held informal workouts to keep their kids sharp.
Each team will now begin its quest for a region championship and a spot in the state tournament. Here is a breakdown on where each sport stands.
In baseball, the Tigers are 5-2 in Region 8-AA North standings and are half a game ahead of Fannin County, who comes in with a 5-3 record.
The team is 6-5 overall after a tough early season schedule. Dawson has a big doubleheader coming up on Saturday, April 18 with Union County beginning at noon.
If the Tigers are able to hold to first place in their sub-region, then they will be matched up with East Jackson.
The Eagles are currently in fourth place in Region 8-AA South with a 2-6 sub-region record and a record of 2-12 overall.
The Tigers have been led offensively by Chase Gilreath, who boasts a .419 batting average with two homers and 13 runs batted in.
Gilreath has also been superb on the mound with a 4-0 record and a miniscule ERA of 1.50.
Third baseman and catcher Kaleb Holbrook has also had a hot bat with a .367 average with six RBI’s.
Ace pitcher Ren Buttram comes in with a 2-4 record and an amazing 49 strikeouts.
Dawson County High School Varsity Boy’s Soccer Coach Jed Lacey’s team plays a huge game today at home against Union County. Results were not available as of press time.
A loss and the Tigers will be out of the state playoffs. A win will give them a shot dependent on how Union County does with Riverside Military Academy this week.
The Panthers come into the game with a 10-0 overall record and are currently 6-0 in the area. Dawson must defeat Union to have any chance to make the state.
Dawson faces an uphill battle after a surprising defeat by Riverside Military Academy just before the break by a score of 5-2.
The top two teams that qualify from Area 15 will qualify for the state tournament.
With the win, Riverside moves ahead of Dawson for second place with a 10-5 overall record and are 6-1 in the area.
The Tigers are currently 10-4 overall and 4-1 in Area 15.
Josh Bolz, Seth Stowers, Alex Cote and Mauricio Escobar have led Lacey’s team offensively. Cote leads the team with 13 goals.
Defensively, the team is led by Jacob Perry, David Scully, Evan Weatherford, Cody Tobias and goalie Dane Trosterud.
On the girls’ side, Coach Rick Corwin’s group has an 8-5-1 overall record and are 3-1 in Area 15.
The Lady Tigers must also defeat Union County to have a shot at a state tournament appearance.
Union came into Tuesday’s game with a 9-1 overall record and a 4-1 area record.
The Lady Panthers lone defeat was to first place Fannin County, 2-1, on March 31.
Fannin took a 1-0 win over the Lady Tigers on March 20.
The Lady Tigers are led by seniors Kelsey Gravitt, Brittany Walker, Rachel Hewlett and Melissa Edwards. Lindsey Vinson has been outstanding in goal for Corwin’s team.
Both golf teams had an outstanding first half of the season.
Head Coach Shari Chastain’s Lady Tigers are trying to defend last year’s AA state runner-up trophy. Dawson is led by seniors Charley Whitmire and Katie Stowers.
The Lady Tigers are currently 7-3 overall, as they prepare for the Region 8-AA tournament.
Dawson will be challenged by Jefferson and Rabun County in the tournament.
Rabun is led by Megan Arthur, who shot a 42 at Kingswood Golf Course in Clayton just before spring break.
The Lady Dragons of Jefferson are led by Jennifer Brueshaber who shot a 45 in a tournament against Hebron at Hammer’s Glen Golf Course on March 26.
This year’s team has also had major contributions from Taylor Hasbrouck, Erin Pruitt and Rachel Dotson.
The boys, under Head Coach Van Samples’ golf expertise, are having their best season in school history.
The team is currently 8-2 on the season as they also prepare for the region golf tournament.
Samples’ team has set the school record for 9-holes twice this season. The latest record happened against Jackson County with a score of 158.
Members of this year’s team are Wesley Bearden, Matt Christopher, Zach Williams, Cody Palmer, Justin Denard, Gavin Lee and Nick Fitts.
Dawson County High School Head Track Coach Arron Haynes’ team has made major strides this season. Despite the weather, the boys and girls teams are doing very well. The team took a title at East Jackson in March and have continued to improve each week.
In the pole vault, TJ Byrd continues to do well with jumps around 11’6.”
Byrd also competes in the discus throw.
John Markley is having an outstanding season in the 400-meters and 200-meters. Eian Perry and Tommy Lin shore up a strong Tiger team.
On the girls’ side, Madelyn Walters and Christine Parker have set new school records in the 1,600-meter and 3,200-meter respectively.
Walters set the record with a time of 5:44, while Parker crossed the finish line with a time of 12:41.
Also doing well for the Lady Tigers are Kimberly Wallace, Morgan Bennett, Ally Orr, Ashley Jacob, Judith Hall and Erin Gordon.
The Region 8-AA track meet will be held for the boys on April 24 and 25 at Jefferson High School.
The girls region will be held May 2 and 4 at East Jackson High School.
Head Coach Rick Land’s boys and girls tennis teams are getting better with each match. With the region tournament just around the corner, April 16 at East Jackson, Land’s teams are eager and ready to play.
Krista Morgan and Jessica Abe have been playing well leading up to the region tournament. They have been a big part of the Lady Tigers success this season.
Grant Brown and Jesse Cash along with their teammates have played well.
It’s an exciting time, as all spring sports set their sights on advancing to the state tournament. The next three weeks will determine who will advance and who will end their season.
E-mail Pam Jacobs at email@example.com.