It was a long night for Tiger Head Coach Jeff Lee and his team last Friday at Memorial Stadium in Jefferson.
Jefferson, the defending Region 8-AA champs, ran away with a 56-16 win against the Tigers. With the loss, Dawson is currently 0-2 on the season, but more importantly they are 0-1 in the region.
In a span of just six minutes, 47 seconds in the first half, Jefferson’s offense and special teams touched the ball four straight times. Those four possessions led to four straight touchdowns.
Jefferson raced to a quick 28-0 lead and never looked back. The speed of the Dragons was evident throughout the contest.
After taking a 7-0 lead, Jefferson forced a three-and-out and drove downfield in six plays.
Running back Lucas Redd scored his second of two touchdowns from the 1-yard line to put the Dragons up 14-0.
Dawson could not get a first down on their next possession and were forced to punt.
Dragon J.J. Damons sprinted through the Tiger punt team for a 56-yard touchdown.
The Tigers still couldn’t pick up a first down and had to punt again.
This time, Dragon quarterback Darius Minor fielded the punt and returned the kick 84 yards for another Jefferson touchdown.
On Dawson County’s next possession, running back Sam Edwards fumbled on the Tigers’ 31-yard-line.
On the next snap, Minor scampered for a 31-yard touchdown.
Minor ended the game going 3-for-6 passing for 39 yards and a touchdown. He also rushed for 49 yards. Minor’s touchdown pass came just before halftime.
Minor found Damons for a 19-yard score, to finish the game just 3-for-6 for 36 yards and a touchdown, but added 44 more on the ground.
Minor sat out the entire second half.
Tiger quarterback Brown finally got his team on the scoreboard, it was Dawson’s first touchdown of the year. Brown scored from 1-yard out just before the half.
The Tigers then lined up in a strange formation for the extra point. Brown got into the end zone for the 2-point conversion.
The score at halftime was 42-8 in Jefferson’s favor.
Legendary coach T. McFerrin cleared his bench for the final two quarters, playing his back-ups. McFerrin picked up his 303rd career win.
Things didn’t get much easier for Dawson County to start the second half.
On the third play from scrimmage, Dawson County quarterback Ethan Brown threw an interception to defensive back André Daniel.
On the next play, junior running back Chris Jackson took a pitch and ran the ball in 11 yards for a score.
The Dragons out gained Dawson on the ground 184 yards to the Tigers 126 yards.
“We are going to live or die running the football,” said Lee.
Dawson picked up another touchdown in the third quarter. Back-up freshman quarterback Tyler Dominy found Levi Wilson for a 30-yard touchdown pass.
Brown converted the 2-point conversion.
On a positive note for the Tigers, the team secured more first downs. Dawson picked up 13 to the Dragons 7.
Rushing yards from Brown and running back Josh Swisher were impressive.
The duo totaled 84 yards on the ground between them. Tiger receiver, Bruce Clark, caught five passes for 62 yards. Clark is a ninth grader.
Dawson’s defense was without a couple of key players in the contest.
Running back Eian Perry was not cleared to play because of a shoulder injury.
Defensive back Cody McGinnis was also unable to play. McGinnis was replaced by a freshman in the secondary.
This week Dawson will be at home against Banks County.
The Leopards lost to Riverside Military Academy, 23-12, last Friday.
Kickoff will be at 7:30 p.m.