The three local teams have seen the same color jerseys for the past three weeks so they are all ready to see someone different.
Calhoun, Gordon Central and Sonoraville will get a chance to see where they are at this point of the preseason and compete against someone other than their teammates this week as each plays their preseason scrimmage.
The big attraction locally will be on Friday night when cross-county rivals Sonoraville and Gordon Central square off in a scrimmage at 7:30 p.m. at Ratner Stadium. Sonoraville coach Denver Pate, who is entering his second season at the helm, said his players are ready for the challenge and a chance to compete against another team.
“Our players are definitely ready to compete against someone else other than ourselves,” said Pate. “The energy at practice has been great and the guys have been flying around having fun. Of course, scrimmaging Gordon Central adds to the hype somewhat, but we need to make sure we are executing like we are coached to do and not get into all the talk about the team we are playing. I feel good about where we are both offensively and defensively at this point. Now I am just ready to see some of the players we are expecting to contribute rise up under the lights.”
Gordon Central coach Cory Nix said the chance to play in the scrimmage is something is players are looking forward to and the fact that it’s Sonoraville they are going up against adds a little buzz to the local scene.
“As far as our scrimmage game goes for this Friday night, our kids are ready to play against someone else,” said Nix, who will start his second season leading the Warriors. “I know they are probably sick and tired of going against each other, and I truly feel like they are ready to see how they stack up against another team. This Friday night will be the next opportunity for them to show us what they’ve got. We will evaluate them as a staff and then determine moving forward their role on this team. The coaching staff and I want to see how they react in a Friday night environment with live reps against someone besides our own team.
“Even though it’s just a scrimmage the, we are looking forward to the challenge of going against Sonoraville. For us and our program, we feel like this is bigger than a scrimmage and we hope everyone comes out to watch both county teams compete against each other.”
The Warriors will open the regular season the following Friday (Aug. 17) on the road at Haralson County at 7:30 p.m. Sonoraville has a week off following the scrimmage before hosting Model in their season opener on Aug. 24 at 7:30 p.m.
Calhoun, coming off a Class AAA State title in 2017, will match up against Northwest Whitfield on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at Phil Reeve Stadium in their preseason scrimmage. Calhoun coach Hal Lamb said it will be a good run through before the regular season starts next week.
“We are very excited about our scrimmage with Northwest Whitfield on Thursday,” said Lamb, who is going into his 20th season at Calhoun. “It’s a great opportunity to see what our players can do in live situations. Our players are looking forward to hitting someone else for change.”
The Jackets open the season next Thursday when they take the short trip to Rome to compete against Ridgeland in the Corky Kell Classic at Barron Stadium at 5:30 p.m. The game is the first of a doubleheader that night as Rome and Marietta will square off at 8:30 p.m.