Jefferson girls' basketball coach Greg Brown wanted his team to face some early-season tests, and it passed one right out of the gate.
Four different Dragon players reached double figures, and Jefferson outscored Dawson County 28-13 in the fourth quarter to rally for a 54-47 season-opening win over the No. 8 Tigers in a Saturday showcase at Buford.
“I just thought we kept fighting the whole game and it paid off in the fourth quarter,” Brown said. “We had some kids step up and hit some big shots. Our depth was key. We got great minutes from our bench.
Livi Blackstock led the Dragons with 14, points, 13 of which came in the final period.
Deshona Gaither added 13 points, Allianne Clark scored 12 (on four 3-pointers) and Courtney Kidd chipped in 10. Jefferson hit 11 3-point shots, with five coming in the fourth quarter.
The Dragons trailed 32-26 heading into the final period.
The come-from-behind win came against a Dawson County team that went 22-9 a year ago and advanced to the Elite Eight.
Jefferson travels to Banks County Tuesday for a 6 p.m. game against the Leopards.
“I think playing this kind of great competition early in the year is only going to help us going forward,” Brown said. “We will clean up our mistakes from today (Saturday) and be ready for Banks County on Tuesday."