Gati, Harvey named 2020-21 Rochelle News-Leader Scholar-Athlete winners

RTHS graduates recognized during halftime ceremony Monday

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ROCHELLE — Former Rochelle Township High School student-athletes Afi Gati and Ben Harvey were recognized with the 2020-21 Rochelle News-Leader Scholar-Athlete Awards during Monday evening’s Rochelle Hub varsity basketball game against the Plano Reapers.

The Rochelle News-Leader Scholar-Athlete Awards are presented each year to two student-athletes who demonstrate extraordinary achievement in both academics and athletics at RTHS. Gati currently attends Augustana College and competes for the women’s track and field program, while Harvey currently studies at Washington University in St. Louis.

“I think it’s awesome that the News-Leader has this award and I’m very excited to be a recipient,” Gati said. “The college experience has been going well so far. I enjoy how fun everything is and I enjoy how there’s a lot of diversity on my campus. Throughout my time at RTHS, I enjoyed being with my teammates and I miss our locker room talks and our practices. We shared a lot of laughs and tears together as well as a lot of good and bad memories.”

“It’s a nice feeling and it feels good to be recognized and see some familiar faces,” Harvey said. “College has been going pretty well for me. It’s been a lot different than I expected, but it’s coming along and I’m excited to see what happens in the future. I enjoyed getting to know all of my teammates throughout my time at RTHS and the camaraderie between the sports.”

Gati spent four years with the Rochelle Lady Hub volleyball, basketball and track programs. Gati received an Interstate 8 All-Conference Honorable Mention during her senior volleyball season and her senior basketball season. Gati was also a top thrower for the track and field team, finishing third in the shot put at the IHSA 2A Plano Sectional during her senior season.

Harvey was a four-year member of the Rochelle Hub football and wrestling programs, ending his wrestling career as the all-time record holder in wins (144) and pins (83). Harvey was a two-time IHSA Individual State Championship and one-time IHSA Dual State Championship qualifier with the wrestling program. Harvey played varsity football for two years, earning Interstate 8 All-Conference First Team recognition and leading the Hubs in rushing during his senior season.