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‘Chess at 100 mph’: Barlow’s Racquetball Annie Roberts

Athlete of the Week

GRESHAM, Ore. (KOIN) — She’s known as Racquetball Annie.

Barlow High School junior Annie Roberts has always been competitive but it wasn’t until a few years ago she found her outlet on the racquetball court.

She and racquetball clicked almost instantly. She fell in love with the pace and intensity of the sport.

Barlow High School junior Annie Roberts is the reigning girls Oregon high school state racquetball champ and the Women's Open national champ, March 1, 2019 (KOIN)

“One person described it as like chess at 100 miles an hour,” Annie told KOIN 6 News. “You can just flat kill it, roll it, it’s really fast-paced, too. It can get super-fast and it’s not so much like sprinting as it is, like, agility.”

It turns out she’s pretty good at it, too. Annie Roberts is the reigning girls Oregon high school state champ. In 2018, she also won the female junior athlete of the year and the Women’s Open national championship.

“She could play on the pro tour right now and probably be Top 25 if she played fulltime,” said Coach Brian Ancheta. “Not only does she have the talent and the ability but she also has the drive and, you know, that’s the difference when it comes to athletes.”

Her list of accomplishments includes already representing the US at racquetball’s Junior Olympic World Championships.

“She worked really hard for that and now she’s the hunted,” Ancheta said. “She’s not the hunter anymore, she’s the hunted.” 

Barlow High School junior Annie Roberts is the reigning girls Oregon high school state racquetball champ and the Women's Open national champ, March 1, 2019 (KOIN)

“It’s just really cool to represent your country, like it’s a really different feeling, especially at the World Games,” Annie said. “At Regionals or State you’re representing yourself, you know, and it’s a really individual competitive sport. But, like, at the World Games you’re representing your country and your whole team so that’s, like, a really cool experience.”

She needs to do a lot of fundraising to be able to travel to various competitions. This weekend, Annie Roberts is at the Racquetball Nationals and she’s giving it her all.

“Me, as a person, I don’t really like to do anything unless I’m doing it 100%.”

For more information: Racquetball Annie

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