ROCHELLE — Several Hub bowlers stepped up and consistently rolled high scores Wednesday afternoon, when Rochelle’s varsity team hosted the Ottawa Pirates at T-Byrd Lanes and attempted to secure its first Interstate 8 Conference victory of the season after an 0-2 start.
Four Hubs averaged 180 or better on Wednesday including junior Sergio Guevara, who led Rochelle with a 546 series in the team’s 3,113-3,018 sweep against the Pirates. Teammates Devansh Patel, Evin Odle and Keith Holland weren’t far behind, rolling series scores of 544, 541 and 540, respectively. Rochelle (1-2) will bowl the Oregon Hawks on the road Friday at 4 p.m.
“It feels really good,” Guevara said. “I thought we all bowled really well today and we all scored close to each other in series. I stayed positive and avoided getting upset when I made an error. I think we’re all pretty confident in ourselves and I think we can win on Friday.”
While the second and third games were close, Rochelle cruised over Ottawa in the first game, winning 980-909 behind 198 from Holland and 199 from Patel, who opened the game with four consecutive strikes. Guevara and Holland spearheaded the charge in the second game, which Rochelle claimed 1,075-1,053. Holland scored a team-high 213, while Guevara fired a 211. Odle added 195 for the Hubs, who took a commanding 93-pin advantage into the third game.
“It feels good to win,” Holland said. “I think we can win a lot more matches if we bowl how we did today. I hit my mark today and I kept my ball in the oil. Staying focused and keeping my form the same throughout each match will be the biggest key for me moving forward.”
Looking for the sweep, Rochelle held a 30-pin lead over the Pirates entering Ottawa anchor bowler Nelson Brandt’s final frame of the third game. Working on a spare, Brandt needed a strike to force a tie and two strikes to win the game for his team. Brandt’s first ball went wide of target, however, allowing the Hubs to edge the Pirates 1,058-1,056 in the third game. Junior Hayden Smith rolled a series-high 212 to propel Rochelle past Ottawa in the finale, while Odle followed with 192.
“It feels awesome to win,” Patel said. “It’s been a while since we last won. I think the win really boosts our confidence, especially after our first two losses against Sycamore and LaSalle-Peru. I was able to hit my mark and stay positive. Staying positive will be the key for me.”