As fall begins so does the beginning of basketball season.
Last Tuesday, both the Dawson County High School varsity girls’ and boys’ basketball teams traveled to Lilburn to play Providence Christian Academy in a scrimmage game.
Both head coaches, Steve Sweat for the girls and Thad Burgess, got a chance to see how their teams would compete against different competition.
The scoreboard is not a true indicator of how well the two teams played.
The Lady Tigers dropped a 48-29 decision, while the boys came out on the short-end of a 60-49 score.
Burgess, who must replace all five starters from last year, said, “We came out scared, like a young team that has never played in a varsity game. This scrimmage will be a giant help to get some jitters out before the real deal on Tuesday. We played 12 players in the scrimmage and substituted freely, it should gain depth and experience for the younger players.”
Youth is also a factor for the girls’ team.
“This is the first year in my coaching career that I haven’t had a senior on one of my teams,” said Sweat.
The girls could never close the gap against Providence. The Lady Stars took a 24-15 halftime lead and never looked back.
The Lady Tigers missed several shots around the basket. Turnovers were also an issue for Dawson, as the Lady Stars came out with a 1-3-1 half court trap to start the third quarter.
One positive note for the Lady Tigers was that nine different players scored.
The scoring was led by Morgan Bennett with seven points.
Judith Hall scored six points and Jessi Phillips contributed five points to lead the offense.
“We’re just young,” said Sweat. “It’s going to take some time for us to grow up.”
In the boys’ game, Dawson got off to a slow start and trailed 20-4 after one quarter of play.
After the first quarter the Tigers played with a renewed enthusiasm for the remainder of the game.
Burgess commented, “We were timid early and scared to make mistakes, which we have to do with our style of play.”
The Tigers’ full court pressure forced Providence into several turnovers.
Junior Shelby Sanford, who just returned from injury, hit two clutch shots to cut the Stars lead to 49-46 with only 2:47 to play in the contest.
The barrage seemed to wake Providence up as they deflated any momentum by Dawson.
Providence scored the next nine points to extend its lead to 58-46.
“I thought in the fourth quarter our pressure and style of play finally kicked in and I felt good about cutting the lead to three with under two minutes in the game,” said Burgess.
Blythe Chester led all Dawson scorers with 15 points.
Ben Daniels and Steven Scaife also scored in double digits with 12 points apiece.
Providence was led by 6’7” post player Wesley Hinton with 15 points. Ryan McClanahan also scored in double digits with 13 points.
Both Tigers teams played host to Tallulah Falls last night. Scores were unavailable as of press time.
Next Tuesday, Nov. 25 both JV and varsity teams will travel to North Forsyth.
E-mail Pam Jacobs at firstname.lastname@example.org.