Boys Tennis: Hubs staying active during the fall

Rochelle players taking advantage of contact days

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ROCHELLE — While Rochelle Township High School’s fall athletic programs wrap up their respective seasons, the Hub and Lady Hub winter, spring and summer teams have been taking advantage of their 20 fall contact days allotted by the Illinois High School Association.

Those teams include the Hub tennis program, which has been taking the courts at RTHS throughout September and October to prepare for the upcoming season. Head coach Kristy Eckardt said that kids have been working through drills and taking as many reps as possible before to stay in playing shape and keep their tennis skills sharp for the summer season.

“We’ve had a few kids come out,” Eckardt said. “It’s been nice to get back into the swing of things since we didn’t have any time to play over the summer and some of our kids weren’t able to get out and play on their own. We’re getting used to being on the court again, which is nice because some of our kids compete and then don’t touch a racket again until March.”

Since seeing its 2019-20 season canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Hub tennis program has been attempting to keep kids involved throughout the summer and fall. In addition to the fall contact days, Eckardt said kids received weekly challenges during the summer through the RTHS Tennis Facebook page, with some of the challenges including playing a singles match, playing with family members or playing with new opponents.

“The more time the kids can be out playing tennis, the better they’ll be,” Eckardt said. “I hope the kids have been taking advantage of our time together. I also encourage our kids to get involved in other sports during the offseason, and I think other sports help as far as agility, quickness and strategy go. I’d like to see our kids compete in four sports if they can.”

The Hub tennis program will be one of several teams scheduled to begin an unprecedented summer season on April 19, 2021. The team will have two weeks of practice before matches are allowed to begin on May 3, 2021. The summer season concludes on June 26, 2021.