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.