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SOCCER: Fueled by donuts and dominance, middle school Lady Tigers prepare for Mountain League championship game
Head coach Andrew Grigsby and the Dawson County Middle School girls soccer team come together after defeating Lumpkin in the Mountain League semifinals on Wednesday, March 29. - photo by Rio White

Over the years, Dawson County Middle School coach Andrew Grigsby has offered a unique reward to the football and wrestling teams he led — a box of donuts for every shutout or “donut” the team achieves.

But in his new role as the DCMS girls soccer coach, Grigsby came across an especially talented group that took full advantage of his offer. 

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This season’s middle school Lady Tigers are not only undefeated — having most recently defeated Lumpkin 4-0 in the Mountain League semifinals — they have yet to allow a single goal so far, effectively giving Grigsby a guaranteed expense after every game.

Now, the team prepares for a championship matchup against Pickens after posting a 7-0 record and scoring 33 goals in the process. 

Talk about a sweet deal. 

“I attribute all the success to the girls,” Grigsby said. “[Soccer] is always something I’ve had interest in [and] when they needed a coach I figured, why not? I literally just put them in the best place to win and they do all the rest.”

A high level of communication and teamwork was displayed by the Lady Tigers against Lumpkin, with Dawson taking an aggressive approach.

Mckinley Adamson pressured the opposing defense early and often, making repeated sprints up the right side. 

Just five minutes into the match, she scored the opening goal before doubling the Dawson advantage 10 minutes later. 

After the Lady Tigers took that 2-0 lead into halftime, Nora Oliver scored just three minutes into the second half — curling in a free kick that found the top right corner of the net.

Dawson finished off the game with 10 minutes left, with Ruth Lopez scoring the fourth and final goal to seal the team’s trip to the Mountain League title game. 

Grigsby expressed his admiration at the team’s efforts all season. 

“These girls are super laid back, they’re confident in themselves, and know their positions,” Grigsby said. “It’s really been [about] team-building and making sure that they understand that…they’ve got to work together to accomplish the goal.”

The championship game against Pickens will be held after Spring Break, with a specific date and time to be determined.