Dawson County racked up 501 total yards of offense in a 27-13 win over visiting Lumpkin County Friday night. The Tigers are known for their spread offense, but Friday was a different story.
Coach Jeff Lee's offense pounded the Indian defense for 418 yards on the ground on 69 carries.
Senior running back Cody Lamar had a huge night running the football. Lamar carried the ball 36 times for 227 yards and a touchdown.
Dawson County also had another hundred-yard rusher in senior Jackson Putnam, who had 15 carries for 113 yards and a touchdown.
It was one of the biggest crowds seen at Tiger Stadium in Dawsonville. There was an electric atmosphere with both stands filled to capacity. Fans filled both banks behind each end zone for the teams that are only separated by 16 miles.
With the win, Dawson County moved to 2-0 on the season. Lumpkin is now 0-1.
The tone was set early on what Lee's offense planned to do to the Indians. Lumpkin deferred to start the game. The Tigers came out in a hurry up offense and ran the Indian defense from sideline to sideline, running sweep after sweep.
It took only 11 plays to cover 78 yards when Lamar pounded the ball in from 2-yards out to give the Tigers a 6-0 lead. Max Muldoon added the extra point and with 10:05 remaining it was 7-0 Dawson.
Lumpkin answered quickly. It took just four plays before Indian quarterback Daniel McCrary split the middle of the Tiger defense for a 44-yard touchdown. The extra point by Noah Cromer was wide left leaving Lumpkin County trailing 7-6 with 8:44 to play in the first quarter.
McCrary was stripped of the football on the Indians next possession.
Tiger defender Logan Hayes recovered to give Dawson County the ball on its own 36-yard line. The Tigers couldn't take advantage of the turnover.
The Indians fumbled again after stopping the Tigers. Running back DJ Jackson coughed up the ball and Tiger defensive back Jackson Putnam recovered.
Lee's team found the end zone again with 5:33 to play in the half. Junior quarterback Zack Buchan found receiver Dalton Edwards in the back corner of the end zone for a 15-yard TD pass to make the score 13-6. Muldoon missed the extra point.
Dawson's defense was tough all night on the Indians. The Tiger defenders forced Lumpkin County into seven three and out situations during the game.
Defensive coordinator Jed Lacey's group only allowed Lumpkin 230 yards total offense all night. In the second half Lumpkin managed just 44 total yards.
Keaton Toal, Logan Hurst, Brandon Tenorio, Putnam, Scotty Zadernak, and Conor Woodbury were just a handful of Tiger defenders who played well for Dawson County, according to the coaching staff.
Holding on to the football for Dawson County was an issued all night on offense. With 4:21 remaining before halftime, running back Kyle Hayes fumbled on his own 16-yard line. Lumpkin's McCrary scooped up the ball and ran into the end zone.
The extra point by Cromer was good and the score was tied 13-13 at halftime.
The third quarter was ugly.
The Tigers fumbled on their opening drive deep in their own territory, giving Lumpkin the ball on the Tiger 13-yard line.
Dawson's defense stiffened. Lumpkin lined up for a 27-yard field goal attempt. The kick was blocked by Chris Sayler, stopping the Indian threat.
The Tigers then drove the ball down the field behind the strong running of Lamar. Dawson lined up for a field goal try of its own, but a bad snap ended the attempt by Muldoon.
Constant pounding by the Tiger offensive line and strong running by Lamar finally wore down the Indian offense in the third and fourth quarters.
Dawson finally pushed the Indians around by the beginning of the fourth quarter.
Lee's offense found the end zone twice with touchdowns by Sayler from 4-yards out with 7:04 to go in the fourth and the deciding blow by Putnam with just 6:25 remaining to put the game on ice.
Up next for Dawson County will be a trip to neighboring North Forsyth. North won its ballgame over Forsyth Central.
Lumpkin County will play host to White County.