Dalton High School Catamounts

November 8, 2013

Region title, state dreams

Act II of Dalton-Gilmer in Ellijay for championship

Over the past four seasons, Dalton High School and Gilmer have struck up a nice rivalry as tonight’s meeting between the two football teams will be the sixth in the last four seasons.

And even though Dalton has won four of those previous five meetings, Gilmer won the only game between the two with a playoff spot on the line, beating Dalton 15-13 in 2010 to deny the Catamounts a trip to the state playoffs.

Tonight, both teams are assured of making the state playoffs, but the Region 7-4A title and the opportunity to host through at least the first two rounds of the playoffs are at stake.

“This one is definitely the biggest game between us,” Gilmer coach Wesley Tankersley said. “Although we have only won one, it has been a big rivalry since we won four years ago. You know that it is always going to be a hard-hitting and well-played football game when these two teams meet."

In other games tonight, Northwest Whitfield travels to Pickens in a Region 7-4A play-in game with the winner advancing to the state playoffs, North Murray is at Gordon Central in a game with Class 3A state playoff implications and Christian Heritage travels to Roswell to take on Fellowship Christian in a game which will affect the final Class A private school power ratings. Also, Southeast Whitfield is at Cass, Coahulla Creek travels to Adairsville and Murray County is at Coosa.

Dalton (7-2) is playing for its first region title since 2007, and coach Matt Land said his team expects the game to be a true “championship” bout.

“I enjoy playing teams like Gilmer,” Land said. “They are a team that is going to do what they do. We have a lot of respect for Gilmer. It is a fun game, and you know that you are going to face someone like it is a prize fight, going toe-to-toe and fist-to-fist. Our kids like that style, and I am sure Gilmer likes that style. It fits both school’s blue-collar mentality.”

This is the second meeting between the two teams this season with Dalton taking a 31-0 win over the Bobcats (8-1) in the third game of the year. The contest marked the return of running back Kelvis Rhodes from injury and saw Gilmer quarterback Chris James leave the game early with an injury. Land said the previous meeting will have no bearing on tonight’s game.

“There is as little correlation from that game to today as comparing apples to bicycles,” Land said. “Both teams have matured since that game. Both teams have become more balanced. They have changed, and we have changed. This game will be a completely different game from the first game.”

Tankersley agreed.

“It has been a good progression for us from that game,” Tankersley said. “We will definitely find out (tonight) just how far we have come. We started out the year with a lot of unknowns, and even looking at Dalton at that time, we had a lot of unknowns. We have progressed a lot, but they have progressed as well. It will be a great game.”

Since his injury, James and Thaddeus Bowers have shared time under center for the Bobcats, but the driving force of the offense is fullback Tyler Bertolini.

On the other side of the ball, linebacker Austin Cole is the leading tackler.

Gilmer is coming off a 38-35 win over Cedartown, which decided the Sub-region 7A title. Dalton hasn’t been challenged since winning 31-28 over rival Northwest Whitfield on a game-ending field goal on Oct. 11. The Cats have given up three points and posted three shutouts in their last four games.

“Although there are some different things that we do, our styles are similar,” Tankersley said. “We have started to throw the ball more, but most of our passes — and the same for them — are based off of the run game and what the other team is going to give you. We both place a big emphasis on the defensive side of the ball.”

Text Only
Dalton High School Catamounts
  • NW at DHS baseball (g3) 1 mlh.jpg Whatever it takes

    Northwest Whitfield High School’s baseball team has been successful this season. But at the same time, no one said success would be easy.
    Several times this year, the Bruins have fallen behind early in the first few innings before answering with a rally to ensure the wins keep coming. On Friday, that formula delivered a Sub-region 7B-4A championship for the second year in a row.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • DHS at SE soccer 7 mlh.jpg Prep Roundup: Unbeaten streak rolls on for Cats

    Replicating the start of last year’s Class 4A state title match, Dalton High School’s boys soccer team needed just four minutes to score its first goal at Southeast Whitfield on Friday.
    The Catamounts scored five more — and again defended their crown of dominance in the sport.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Roundup: Bruins power past Cats for key victory at home

    TUNNEL HILL — Similar to Wednesday’s Sub-region 7B-4A baseball series opener at Dalton High School, Northwest Whitfield fell behind early Thursday versus the Catamounts.

    April 11, 2014

  • NW at SE baseball 7   mlh.jpg Prep Baseball: Looking for a leader

    Dalton High School baseball coach Shane Ramsey only needed one word to sum up what he expects from this week’s three-game series with Sub-region 7B-4A foe and intracounty rival Northwest Whitfield.
    “Intensity,” he said. “If you can’t get up for this series, then why are you playing?”

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Roundup: Dalton golf teams in form at Fields Ferry

    Even in wet and muddy conditions, both the Dalton High School boys and girls golf teams are sharpening their games at the right time.
    With the Region 7-4A tournament scheduled in two weeks, both the Catamounts and the Lady Cats finished second during play at the Fields Ferry Invitational in Calhoun on Monday. Despite the soggy conditions, Dalton’s Jacob Brown tied for medalist honors with a 2-over par 74 to lead the Cats to a 313 combined score in the six-play, four-score format. Dalton finished three strokes behind tournament winner LaFayette.

    April 8, 2014

  • Wrestler of the year 2014 2 mlh.jpg All-Area Wrestling Team and Wrestler of the Year: Winning another title was the only goal for Wheeler

    When Dalton High School wrestler Sidney Wheeler won a state title for the first time two years ago as a sophomore, he admitted he became a little complacent about what it would take to replicate the feat — perhaps not noticeably so to most observers, but enough to take success for granted. Wheeler believed it a matter of course that he would win state again, and he thought the second title would simply be the middle child in a high school three-peat.

    April 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Roundup: Behr finds his stroke in Vidalia

    Dalton High School golfer Allen Behr shot a 3-under-par 69 during the second day of the Indian Invitational in Vidalia to lead the Catamounts to a top-10 finish in the event Saturday.

    April 6, 2014

  • dhs v lafayette baseball1.jpg Out of control victory

    Dalton and LaFayette high schools are on spring break this week, and on Monday their baseball teams’ pitching took a vacation when it came to throwing strikes.
    The teams combined for 14 walks and four hit batters in a Sub-region 7B-4A game at Dalton, although most of the damage belonged to the host Catamounts, who won 5-4 despite their control problems.

    April 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • dhs baseball signing sane1.jpg Prep Baseball: Sane taking his drive to Chattanooga State

    Grant Sane isn’t a player who is concerned with his stats or his individual accomplishments. He is more interested in doing whatever he can do for his Dalton High School baseball team to be successful.

    March 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ridgeland at DHS baseball 3 mlh.jpg Sharp enough to win

    Dalton High School freshman pitcher Sam Stepp found himself in a jam a lot during Wednesday’s home game against Ridgeland.
    He always found a way out.

    March 27, 2014 1 Photo