The Dawson County Tigers traveled to North Hall last week and came away with a huge win.
The large crowd at The Brickyard did not intimidate the Tigers as they picked up a 45-27 region win over the Trojans.
"The environment, it's a packed house, it's a tough place to play," said Head Coach Sid Maxwell.
The Tigers fought through a significant number of penalties as well as North Hall's Kyle Bacus who had already racked up 829 rushing yards coming into the game.
Dawson County scored first after holding the Trojans on their first possession.
The Tigers first drive from their own 35-yard line ended with a Peyton Allen 39-yard field goal.
The Dawson County defense again held the Trojans. This time it was on a fourth down and 4 around the 22-yard line. Dawson took over on downs.
The second drive for the Tigers saw three completions from Coey Watson to Austin Young and a 29-yard completion to Kolton Brumbelow.
The drive was capped off by a touchdown throw to Nick Murphy.
Watson was 18-for-27 on the night for 235 yards and three touchdowns with one interception.
Young had 7 receptions for 109 yards.
Dawson County went up 10-0 with 34 seconds in the first quarter.
North Hall's next possession saw Maddox Turner run on back-to-back plays for 18 yards and 31 yards to take the Trojans to the 8-yard line. North Hall scored with 10:34 in the second quarter to make it 10-7.
The Tigers next drive ended with a tipped ball that was intercepted and returned to the 24 by Cutter Sanford.
The Trojans took advantage of the turnover and scored again with 6 minutes until half to make it 14-10.
"That one play, we just saw what we weren't doing and were supposed to be doing," Maxwell said.
Maxwell and the defensive team gathered to check out film on the sideline and made some adjustments.
"We had to adjust to their counter play and make sure our reads were correct," said Defensive Coordinator Brent Cox.
Clearly, the adjustments worked.
When the Dawson County offense was unable to get anything going, the defense held their own.
The Tiger D had a goal-line stand to get the ball back on downs once again.
"They had the goal-line stand which probably was the turning point in the game, to be honest with you," Maxwell said.
The Trojans added a personal foul which gave the Tigers some breathing room to start their next drive. The final drive before the half, however, would result in a missed field goal.
After the half, the North Hall festivities came to an abrupt halt when senior Kolton Brumbelow returned the kickoff 99 yards for a Tiger touchdown to go ahead 17-14.
The Tigers would not trail again.
The fired up defense forced a three-and-out and the Dawson County offense got moving.
"The only adjustment we made at halftime was putting more emphasis on running the ball," said Offensive Coordinator Andy LeBlanc. "We talked about being focused on execution and staying away from negative plays and penalties. The kids had a great attitude at halftime, they knew all we had to do is execute our offense."
Dawson went to Payton Myers on the ground repeatedly.
Myers carried 15 times for 109 yards with one touchdown run.
Watson connected with Murphy for his second touchdown of the night to go up 24-14 with 6:36 left in the third.
The Trojans fought back on the next possession with a series of runs by Bacus. Jackson Madonna got in the end zone to bring it back within 3 points at 24-21.
The following Dawson drive ended when Watson connected with Luke Martin for a touchdown to put the Tigers up 31-21.
Martin had two receptions and 25 tackles during the game.
The defense held again and the Trojans punt attempt resulted in a bad snap over the punter's head. He had to cover the ball and Dawson took over at the 2-yard line of the Trojans. Watson put in it on a keeper to add to the lead, 38-21.
Watson rushed for 36 yards.
Myers would add another touchdown on the next drive, following the blocks of Martin to make it 45-21.
The Trojans final drive ended with a touchdown and a try for a 2-point conversion that was stopped by Dylan Nix.
"Dylan played extremely hard and well," said Cox. "He was our defensive player of the game."
"It was a great team win," Maxwell said. "To go into that environment and turn that game around in the third and fourth quarters like we did."
The Tigers are working this week to get ready for Union County on Friday.
"Quarterback Cole can run and throw ... quite an athlete. He has several good receivers to get the ball to, and, Bo does a great job running the ball. We must slow them down and have some 3 and outs," Cox said.
Dawson County moves to 3-1 overall and 1-0 in region play with the 45-27 victory. They will face a 5-1 Union County at 7:30 p.m. Friday at home for Youth Night.