At 97, Valley man still competing in racquetball tournaments

A local man is known to be one of the oldest racquetball players around.

Lake Westphal has been playing for nearly half of his life, and he tells us he has no plans of slowing down.

Westphal is in his 90's, and still going strong. In fact, he'll even be competing in a national tournament this week.

On a typical day, you can find Westphal at the Sun City West Rec Center on the racquetball court. On Monday, he's practicing for the World Senior Racquetball Tournament in New Mexico. He has competed in the tournament for 30 years, but as the years go by, there are fewer people in his age division to compete against.

"It's an international tournament, and I'm by far, about five years, the oldest player that they have, and there's about 180 players in that tournament," said Westphal.

Westphal is 97 years old, but people wouldn't be able to tell, judging by his stamina and moves on the court. He even gets upset with himself when he doesn't play like he used to.  

"I get very upset with myself because I know what I used to do, and what I can do now is far different," said Westphal.

Racquetball isn't the only thing keeping Westphal busy. He volunteers at Banner, swims a quarter of a mile every other day, and works as an elevator operator at State Farm Stadium. He says staying active keeps him young, which means he won't be putting down the racket any time soon.  

"I've made one goal in my life, and that is to be playing racquetball tournament, racquetball at 100, and I'm going to have a large party," said Westphal.

Westphal and his wife will be driving to New Mexico for that tournament on Tuesday. That tournament wraps up on Sunday, but before this, Westphal will be working the Rolling Stones concert at State Farm Stadium.