Girls Tennis: Homewood-Flossmoor remains near the top after Day 1 of state finals10/18/12 Tinley Park's Haley Wilcox during action on the 1st day of the IHSA Girls Tennis Championships on Thursday in Hoffman Estates. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 18, 2012 8:58PM
Gaby Rosales had little trouble justifying her lofty status Thursday at the Girls State Tennis Tournament.
A 9-16 seed, Rosales dropped just five games in posting a trio of straight-set victories on the opening day of play.
The outcomes enabled the junior to qualify for the Round of Sixteen on Friday in the meet contested at 14 northwest suburban sites, including host Buffalo Grove.
“My motivation is to be better than last year,” said Rosales, who was eliminated in third round of the backdraw as a sophomore.
“I tried to play smarter. I didn’t try to kill the ball. It was kind of windy, so I just tried to work through the points more.”
Homewood-Flossmoor senior Adesuwa Osabuohien, another 9-16 seed, also advanced to the fourth round of the championship bracket.
H-F finished the day in fifth place, the same spot it finished last season.
Rosales capped her performance with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Oak Park’s Samantha Schafer. In the fourth round, Rosales is slated to take on Mundelein’s Ari Dechter, a 5-8 seed, at Hersey.
“She’s just very focused, very determined,” Marian coach Scott Bodnar said of Rosales. “She’s playing even better than we expected.”
Osabuohien swept her first and last matches. The middle one, however, proved to be quite a struggle. She trailed Joliet Catholic’s Harley Hutchison 4-2 in the third and deciding set before rallying for a 4-6, 7-5, 6-4 win.
Osabuohien’s fourth-round opponent is Alex Solovyev, of Hinsdale Central, a 5-8 seed.
Faith Huckabee and the doubles tandem of Sophia Osabuohien and Timara Maxwell qualified for the fourth and third rounds, respectively, for H-F in the consolation bracket.
“If we repeat what we did last year, that would be very good; I’d be happy with that,” H-F coach Don Baron said. “I’d also be disappointed if we didn’t finish in the top 10.”
Four other local area doubles teams and three local singles players also qualified for the consolation bracket.