Roberts signs with Chowan

Published 10:53 pm Friday, May 24, 2013

Chantel Roberts of King’s Fork committed to attend and play basketball for Chowan University during a Wednesday signing ceremony at King’s Fork High School. Her parents, Curtis and Lisa Roberts, look on and look forward to seeing her play at the next level.

Chantel Roberts of King’s Fork committed to attend and play basketball for Chowan University during a Wednesday signing ceremony at King’s Fork High School. Her parents, Curtis and Lisa Roberts, look on and look forward to seeing her play at the next level.

King’s Fork basketball standout Chantel Roberts will return to the court as a college freshman after committing to play for Chowan University during a signing ceremony on Wednesday at King’s Fork High School.

The event was the realization of what Roberts said “always has been a dream of mine.”

“It means a lot,” she said. “It means that I get to further my basketball career and education.”

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Among those present for the signing were her parents, Curtis and Lisa Roberts. Her father was particularly happy to see her have the opportunity to pursue further schooling.

“That’s the most important thing to me, that she gets to continue her education, plus play,” he said. “That’s what she wants to do. I’m happy for her, very proud of her, because she’s got good grades, an honor student also.”

“I’m sure Chantel will do well, on the court and academically,” her mother said.

To see her dream come true, Roberts had to overcome two injuries during her high school career, one to each knee. As a sophomore, she sprung her anterior cruciate ligament in the left knee during a game, which sidelined her for a little while. Her junior year ended when she tore the ACL in her right knee. But she returned in her senior year, and by the end, she was back in form, once again a major factor in the Lady Bulldogs’ success.

While the injuries may have caused some bigger schools to back off, Roberts still had impressive options available. She got into James Madison University, Virginia Commonwealth University and East Carolina University, but she wanted playing time.

“This coach at Chowan already told her that she will be getting playing time her freshman year,” Curtis Roberts said.

With home games only 45 minutes away and many road games within reasonable driving distance, Roberts’ parents will be able to see quite a bit of her college career.

“I’m very excited about that,” her father said.

Chantel described what it was about Chowan that appealed to her.

“I kind of like the environment and the people and teachers, they were real kind, and they said that they would help me in basketball and in the classroom, so that’s all I look forward to,” she said.

King’s Fork head coach Maurice Fofana said, “I’m happy for her. It couldn’t happen to a better kid.”

He said that with all the trials she has been through, it is great to witness her “fight through it, and end up receiving a scholarship at a Division II school to go on and further her basketball career. They’re really getting a steal with her.”

He said Roberts would bring hard work and a hard, physical style of play to the Hawks, and he said her 5’11” height would play in her favor.

“She’s going to probably be a match-up problem for most kids,” he said. “I don’t really know where Coach (Patrick Mashuda) is going to play her at, but at the three, she’s probably going to be bigger than most threes. She can rebound well, she can shoot it well, she can put it on the floor. She was being recruited from one guard to a three guard, so it’s just kind of interesting to see where she’s going to fit in.”