The Fall sports season is in full swing now, and that includes the hard-working, dedicated cross country teams from each local school getting into action.

The teams have worked hard during the summer and preseason to be ready for the challenge ahead of them as they face the 3.1-mile courses on their schedules over the next few months. Each team returns several individual runners that helped their respective teams achieve high goals in 2017 with all but one local squad sending either the team or an individual to the State Meet in Carrollton, and atop the list of expectations for each this year is another trip to Carrollton in early November.

For full schedules for the three teams, see Wednesday's Calhoun Times.

The teams will all be fully into their season within the next few days so below is all the info you need to know for each. Here’s some team info for Calhoun, Sonoraville and Gordon Central as well as some thoughts from each of the three head coaches:

CALHOUN

Head Coach: Justin Lindsey (third season)

Last Year’s accomplishments: Boys finished as Region 6-AAA champs and finished seventh at State; Girls finished as Region 6-AAA runners-up and finished 12th at State

Key Runners: Boys-Brody Blalock (Sr.), Jonathan Santana (Sr.), Felipe Barrios (Soph.), Mario Marroquin (Jr.); Girls-Mari Morales (Sr.), Ashley Hartness (Jr.), Teresa Nguyen (Soph.), Ashley Jaramillo (Soph.)

Coaches Questions:

CT: How hard has the team been working during the summer and in preseason practices to get ready for the 2018 season? What have been the biggest things they have been working on?

LINDSEY: We had a very strong summer and preseason with more runners showing up at the first day of official practice prepared to handle the challenges that our practices bring with them. I have been very impressed so far with their ability to embrace high expectations and workloads in order to better themselves. Our workouts each have a different focus and purpose, whether it be building strength on hills, speed on repeats, endurance through long runs or improving our threshold. We have focused more on the mental aspect of running and team building. With the expectations and tradition at Calhoun, it is evident that success only comes to those teams who have a mental edge. We have focused on character development, mental toughness and developing a high level of grit.

CT: What are the keys or the things your team must accomplish in order to reach their full potential this season?

LINDSEY: As stated earlier, I feel that the key to our success will be embracing the challenge that comes with high expectations by being disciplined enough to consistently practice and act like a champion. The state of Georgia is loaded with talent, with many schools possessing a similar level talent. Talent is important, but developing a mindset that can persevere in challenging situations will ultimately determine how far we can go. Furthermore, the team chemistry and the ability to sacrifice for the betterment of the team will also be a major factor.

CT: What are your goals or expectations for what you believe your team can do this upcoming season?

LINDSEY: First and foremost, our goal is for each student-athlete to finish the season with better character and more prepared for the real world. Result wise, we have the same goal that was established during my first year. We are constantly working toward being the boys and girls Rome All-Area, Gordon County, Region and GHSA state champions. These goals will remain in place until all are accomplished.

SONORAVILLE

Head Coach: Butch Burch (sixth season)

Last Year’s accomplishments: Boys finished third in Region 6-AAA and finished 12th at State; Girls had Riley Triplett qualify for State as an individual and she finished 36th in AAA

Key Runners: Boys-Nahum Trenti (Soph.), Ben Stewart (Jr.), Spenser Ford (Jr.); Girls-Riley Triplett (Soph.)

Coaches Questions:

CT: How hard has the team been working during the summer and in preseason practices to get ready for the 2018 season? What have been the biggest things they have been working on?

BURCH: We had a decent summer, but were unable to get all of our runners out. These last two weeks of practice have been spent on getting some in shape and speed work for others.

CT: What are the keys or the things your team must accomplish in order to reach their full potential this season?

BURCH: We have got to build on the winning attitude from last year and set some goals. We lost a couple of key people, and we need some to step in to those roles. Our first meet will answer a lot of questions.

CT: What are your goals or expectations for what you believe your team can do this upcoming season?

BURCH: I think we have the talent to repeat our State trip from last year. I think our kids will be disappointed if we don’t achieve that.

GORDON CENTRAL

Head Coach: Shannon Rainwater (11th season)

Last Year’s accomplishments: Boys finished third in Region 7-AA and finished 14th at State

Key Runners: Boys-Nelson Rodriguez, Bryce Bussert, Alfredo Pegueros; Girls-Taylor Evans, Jasmine Velasco, Sarai Tituana

Coaches Questions:

CT: How hard has the team been working during the summer and in preseason practices to get ready for the 2018 season? What have been the biggest things they have been working on?

RAINWATER: We have been having workouts throughout the summer. My runners worked endurance and technique, while also acclimating themselves to the heat.

CT: What are the keys or the things your team must accomplish in order to reach their full potential this season?

RAINWATER: In order to accomplish their goals, my team needs to really push and encourage each other. They are fairly good at this, but with a common goal, everyone’s focus is the same. We hope to stay injury free for the most part and really work on adding strength to the endurance and speed we are already seeing from the runners.

CT: What are your goals or expectations for what you believe your team can do this upcoming season?

RAINWATER: We look to continue our trips to the state meet. The boys’ team is looking strong with a big group of new 10th-grade runners....varsity spots are really up for grabs. The girls are fewer in number, but we have some great returning runners and should qualify a few individuals for state.