Rochelle senior Zane Walters made the most of his shortened varsity soccer season this spring, leading the Hubs with 15 goals while adding five assists. After spending four years with the Rochelle Hub soccer program, Walters will be taking his talents to the NCAA Division III level.
The senior midfielder will be continuing his academics and his athletics at Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin next year. A four-year varsity player, Walters started in the midfield for the last two seasons, recording 24 assists and 22 goals during the span. Walters led the Hubs to a 6-5-1 record and a third-place finish in the Interstate 8 Conference tournament this year.
“Carroll University has a really good coaching staff and they’re rebuilding their program,” Walters said. “They have a lot of potential next season. Their academics in the health field are really good and that’s what I’m going for. I want to play at the highest level available to me and I want to play against the best players. I plan to study chemistry and pre-dentistry.”
Walters earned All-Conference Honorable Mention consideration from the Interstate 8 during his junior season, where he recorded 19 assists and seven goals. The talented midfielder emerged as a reserve during his freshman season, totaling five assists and two goals before stepping up as a sophomore, helping the Hubs to a record-setting 20-1-1 season where Rochelle won both the Northern Illinois Big 12 West and IHSA 2A Sterling Regional titles.
“Playing soccer at RTHS has helped me get into shape and become strong enough to play at the college level,” Walters said. “I hope to be fighting for a starting spot and scoring goals. I will bring a work ethic with me that will push my teammates to work harder on the field.”
Walters said he plans to pursue dental school in the hopes of opening his own practice. Walters will be one of seven seniors graduating from the Rochelle Hub soccer program this year. Rochelle finished 51-22-2 across the four seasons Walters spent on the varsity team.
“It’s been a pleasure to watch Zane over the last four years,” head coach Brad Male said. “Zane has a really good sense of the game and he has exceptional ball control. He does an incredible job at controlling the speed of the game. I’ll miss having Zane here at RTHS, but I have no doubt that his skills and dedication to the sport will help carry him over to the next level.”