Kari Evans, Ashley Robinson team up to win national pickleball crown
Two generations teamed up in one new sport and added up to gold in mid-December.
In this case, those two generations — Kari Evans of Wilsonville and her daughter Ashley Robinson of West Linn — combined to win the national championship in Women's Doubles Pickleball - Level 4.0 - Age 19+. Robinson and Evans — who qualified for nationals by previously winning the Pacific Northwest Regional Pickleball Championships in Boise, Idaho, in June 2021 — won their latest title at the 2021 Margaritaville USA Pickleball National Championships in Indian Wells, California.
Both Robinson and Evans — a Wilsonville resident since 2000 — have long ties to West Linn. Robinson, 34, graduated from West Linn High School in 2005 after helping the Lions volleyball team win a state championship in 2003. A setter, she was a two-time Three Rivers League Player of the Year, two-time first team all-state pick, High School All-American and Prep Volleyball Top 250 selection.
Robinson later earned a full ride to Oregon State University, where she was a four-year letter winner as setter and defensive specialist. She was team captain and earned Pac-10 All-Academic Honors. She continues to hold Top 10 single-season and career records for assists and digs for OSU.
Now married and the mother of three, Robinson moved back to West Linn two years ago to raise her family with her husband (another 2005 WLHS grad). She is also one of the volleyball coaches at West Linn and was a part of their state championship win in November.
For her part, Evans, 61, is a mother of four who lived in West Linn from 1987-2000 before moving to Wilsonville.
Also of note, because the age bracket cutoffs came at 35+, 50+ and 60+, Evans and Robinson had to compete against the youngest competitors (19+) in the sport at their level. Their combined age was often more than double that of the teams they played.
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