4A baseball MVP: Salem Hills' Colton Hill
Salem Hills senior Colton Hill displayed an exceptional variety of skill for the Skyhawks on a team that featured several standout players, raced to a 27-3 record and seized the Class 4A state championship.
It was Hill's sturdy left arm that was a huge asset during state tournament week. He started on Tuesday by throwing seven innings in a 2-1 victory over Mountain View, a team Salem Hills beat by a single run three times during the year.
Colton Hill was back on the mound three days later starting in the championship game win over Maple Mountain.
It was a fitting way for Hill to finish a senior season that saw him compile a 12-1 record.
"I feel like instead of trying to overpower people, I was trying to locate and use my other pitches," Hill said.
"He was effective because he'd throw his curve in the strike zone as well as his change," Salem Hills coach Scott Haney said. "When you have a pitcher that can throw three pitches like that, you're going to be hard to beat."
Hill's versatility isn't just confined to his pitching repertoire. According to Haney, Hill has college-level ability either throwing the ball or playing an everyday position. He finished his senior year with a .413 batting average.
But that all will have to wait.
Hill's summer heat will be extended a little bit when he heads to Ecuador in August to begin a two-year church mission.
"It's going to be hot, but I'm excited for it," said Hill, who has a head start over some missionaries because he took two years of Spanish in high school. "When they lowered the age [to go on an LDS mission], I wanted to go earlier."
Hill's ambition is to play college baseball after returning, and he's looking in the direction of Utah Valley University right now.
"Over the years, I've got to work with the coaches through camps and stuff like that," Hill said. "Whether I walk on or get some scholarship help, I think that's where I'm going to go."