Prestigious honor for South’s Hill

PARKERSBURG – Earlier this month, former Parkersburg South state champion Lance Hill was honored as the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference’s West Virginia wrestler of the year.

A third place finisher this winter for the Patriots at 113 pounds, the high school All-American was a state champion when he capped off his 49-3 junior campaign at the top of the 106-pound podium.

Hill, who makes the second Patriot to win the award after his former teammate David Jeffrey took the honor last year, was selected by a five-member panel along with Shadyside’s Alex Quinn. Quinn earned the OVAC’s Ohio wrestler of the year plaque.

“It was pretty cool. I got a bunch of recognition for it and everything,” Hill said of the award which is given to seniors and based on their wrestling accomplishments throughout their prep careers.

“Then when I got the most outstanding wrestler award, I didn’t even know I was getting something for that and that was cool, too.”

Hill, a member of the OVAC squad which dominated Pennsylvania’s Midwestern Athletic Conference, 43-21, in the annual “Clash of Champions” all-star wrestling event, was named MOW after scoring a 17-1 technical fall versus Chris Flynn of SouthSide.

“I haven’t hung it up yet,” Hill responded when asked if the “Clash of Champions” match was the final time he’d done a singlet. “I think I’m going to wrestle in college, probably like OVU (Ohio Valley University) or something. I’ve talked to their coach (Pat Sole) a lot. He wants me to come out there.”

Not only did Hill earn All-American honors after taking third at last year’s NHSCA Junior Nationals, he also was a three-time OVAC and Region I champion.

“One of my biggest accomplishments was when I placed at the Ironman,” Hill admitted. “That was one of the biggest things I’ve done in high school.”

Even though Parkersburg South failed to win a fifth straight Class AAA team title this year, Hill said he was pretty much content with how his Patriot mat career ended up.

“This year really didn’t go the way we wanted it to, but I think things still went pretty good,” said Hill, who brought up his experiences of going to Las Vegas and Florida to wrestle as memories to cherish for a lifetime.

“We had some fun in those places. I’m happy with it (how things turned out). My first three years, there was nothing not to really be happy with.”