It was a night of firsts for Dawson County Middle School's football team. Playing in a recently renovated Tiger Stadium the Dawson County Middle School Tigers did something that they have never done before, defeated Riverview Middle School, 14-0.
The Tigers dominated on both sides of the ball.
Offensively, the team rode the coattails of fullback Conor Woodbury and on defense the team smothered the line, which limited the speedy backs of Riverview.
Dawson County Middle controlled the ball on offense. It was important to not only control the clock, but limit the number of offensive possessions for Riverview.
After a lengthy drive, Dawson got on the scoreboard first on a 4-yard touchdown run by Woodbury, following a drive that ate almost seven minutes off the clock. The Tigers converted on a 2-point conversion by Woodbury to take an 8-0 lead.
Riverview couldn't muster anything on offense and went into halftime trailing, 8-0.
The Eagles started with the ball at the beginning of the second half. However, on the first play from scrimmage the Eagles fumbled and gave the ball back to the Tigers.
Dawson didn't waste much time. The Tigers fed Woodbury over and over again until it finally paid off with a touchdown on a 6-yard run at the 4:29 mark of the third quarter.
The extra point was no good, but Dawson held a commanding 14-0 lead.
Neither team could muster any offense in the final quarter and a half. Dawson County controlled the clock with a tough running game to pull out the win.
"We controlled the ball on offense," said Tiger Head Coach Thomy Edwards. "The defense played really great and allowed Riverview no points. The linebackers did an excellent job with their reads and tackled really well. Our ends did not allow a sweep to get outside of them. Our defensive line did a good job of getting in the backfield."
The Tiger defense forced Riverview to turn the ball over three times in the contest.
There were two fumble recoveries and an interception by Austin Young.
According to Edwards, the Tiger offense was also strong.
"I thought the offense did a great job controlling the ball. Our backs ran hard and the line did a wonderful job blocking. Brody Chester, quarterback, did an awesome job managing the game," Edwards said.
"Conor Woodbury ran the ball hard. When we needed a first down you knew he would get it. Riverview could not stop him. Conor was also good on defense. He was all over the field making tackles. I thought Beau Cooper did an awesome job at center. When it comes to blocking, he not only knows his position but he helps the other linemen to know where to go. I also thought Cody Owen dominated on the defensive line," Edwards added.
Riverview Head Coach Mark Thomason praised the efforts of both teams, but said his team made too many mistakes.
"I thought both teams played very hard. But in the end we made too many mistakes. We turned the ball over too many times and we were not ready for the onside kick following their first touchdown. We also shot ourselves in the foot with too many penalties," Thomason said.
"We must improve at finishing our blocks on the offensive line. We went to the correct place several times, but did not finish the blocks like we should have. Also we missed too many tackles. Several times we had running backs wrapped up and we didn't finish the tackles," he added.
The Riverview coach praised the play of running back Mateo Fritz and linemen Jake Booth and Cole Hoppal.
On defense, Thomason thought Jake Booth and Brendan Capps played well and made the majority of their tackles.
Both teams will be back in action Thursday.
The Tigers will travel to Clear Creek in Ellijay, while Riverview will go on the road to face Jasper Middle School.
Both games will begin at 5 p.m.