Boys Tennis: Rochelle finishes second in Hub Varsity Invitational

Junior John Green and seniors Peter Forsberg and Jason Zheng (left to right) each earned individual awards for their performances in the Hub Varsity Invitational on Saturday. (Courtesy photo)

Zheng, Forsberg & Green earn runner-up placements

ROCHELLE — The Rochelle Hub varsity tennis team finished second out of seven schools with 16 points in the Hub Varsity Invitational on Saturday. Senior Jason Zheng took second at No. 2 singles, while junior John Green and senior Peter Forsberg placed second at No. 2 doubles.

Zheng finished the tournament with a 3-1 record, defeating Newman Central Catholic’s John Craft 8-2 before winning 8-4 over Princeton’s Asa Gartin. Zheng topped Morrison’s Mark Cyphers 8-4 before conceding a 2-8 loss against Dixon’s Lieth Elbzour in the final round.

Forsberg and Green also totaled a 3-1 record, beginning the invite with a 6-8 loss to Geneseo’s Jacob Hartman and Chase Marshall before rallying for three straight victories. The Rochelle duo downed Dixon’s Grant Boss and Bashar Elbzour 8-2 in the third round before edging Newman Central Catholic’s Griffin Moran and Kaden Welty 9-7 in the fourth round. Green and Forsberg cruised over Princeton’s Ben Anderson and Josh Orwig 8-1 to close out the tournament.

Juniors David Wanner and Owen Haas took third at No. 1 doubles with a 2-2 record. Wanner and Haas fell 4-8 against Geneseo’s Eric Vergane and Sam Mosbarger and 2-8 against Dixon’s Lucas Healy and Owen Grot over their first two matches of the tournament. Wanner and Haas finished strong with an 8-3 win over Newman Central Catholic’s Koda Brininger and James Rhodes and an 8-5 victory against Princeton’s Matthew Sims and Chase Sims in the final round.

Senior Devansh Patel and junior Nolan Fonfara also took third at No. 3 doubles with a 2-2 record. The two dropped their opening match 1-8 against Dixon’s Kaiser Khawaja and Alex Ulrich before bouncing back with an 8-4 win over Newman Central Catholic’s Ryan Partington and Carson Palmer. The Rochelle combo dominated Princeton’s Michael Ellis and Eli Skaggs 8-2 before bowing out with a tough 8-9 loss to Geneseo’s Jacob Nelson and Benny Robinson.

Senior Alex Gilbert finished third at No. 1 singles with a 1-3 record, starting the tournament with three losses before concluding with an 8-3 victory over Newman Central Catholic’s Logan Palmer. Gilbert fell 6-8 against Princeton’s Tyson Phillips in the opening round before conceding a 3-8 loss to Rock Falls’ Dawson Newendyke and an 0-8 loss to Dixon’s Logan Moeller.


The Rochelle Hub varsity tennis team faced Sterling on the road Friday afternoon, falling 5-0 to end an eight-match winning streak. The Hubs (10-2, 4-0 Interstate 8) will resume nonconference play with home matches against Mendota and Freeport on Monday and Tuesday at 4:30 p.m.

The Golden Warriors claimed both singles points, with Brecken Peterson defeating senior Alex Gilbert 6-0, 6-0 at No. 1 singles and Ethan Melcher downing senior Jason Zheng 6-2, 6-2 at No. 2 singles. Sterling won all three doubles matches to hand the Hubs their first shutout loss.

Connor Pham and Luke Valentino defeated juniors David Wanner and Owen Haas 6-2, 6-2 at No. 1 doubles, while Kayden Loos and Benjamin Boze held off senior Peter Forsberg and junior John Green 6-1, 6-4 at No. 2 doubles. Hunter Lofgren and Carter Morris sealed Sterling’s sweep with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over senior Devansh Patel and junior Nolan Fonfara at No. 3 doubles.