ROCHELLE — The Rochelle Hub tennis team served up the 2020-21 season on Thursday, facing Belvidere North in nonconference play. The Blue Thunder defeated the Hubs 6-0, sweeping two singles matches and four doubles matches. Rochelle (0-1) faces DeKalb on the road Tuesday.
“I thought the kids were great,” head coach Kristy Eckardt said. “It was the first match ever for most of our kids and we had some windy conditions. I thought they did well with shaking their nerves off and even though we didn’t win, there were some good games happening.”
Sophomore David Wanner battled with Jackson Kohls at No. 1 singles, falling 5-7, 3-6. Junior Alex Gilbert took the court at No. 2 singles, losing 1-6, 3-6 to Spencer Kohls. Juniors Devansh Patel and Peter Forsberg fell 1-6, 2-6 against Austin Biel and Adam Bellenson at No. 1 doubles.
“Alex and David did a nice job,” Eckardt said. “Alex played a good opponent, but he had some nice rallies and we talked after the match about what he needed to work on moving forward. It was nice seeing David play against somebody else since he didn’t have a season as a freshman. He has a lot of good instincts and it was nice that he was able to get his first match in.”
Sophomores Owen Haas and Evin Odle teamed up at No. 2 doubles, losing 0-6, 1-6 against Belvidere North’s Thomas Foster and Jack Dickerson. Freshmen Parker Lenkaitis and Avery Auld faced Blue Thunder duo Hugo Delgado and Jack Stolp at No. 3 doubles, falling 2-6, 1-6. Sophomores Ryan Ward and Nolan Fonfara rounded out the Rochelle lineup at No. 4 doubles, playing a close second set before ultimately falling 1-6, 6-7 against Ethan Kay and James Foster.
“I think our consistency and getting more comfortable will be the keys for us,” Eckardt said. “We’ll continue working through the details of being in the right positions, putting shots away at the net and other things that will come with time. I thought the kids communicated well.”