Recruiting letters from NCAA Division I programs are again arriving at the Hill family home in Minneapolis.
Minneapolis South guard Morgan Hill, eighth in the state in scoring at 25.2 points per game, could become the third member of her family to play at a major college basketball program after next season. Her older brother, PJ, and sister, Tayler, both played at Ohio State.
“I definitely want to go D-I [somewhere] that has a good basketball program and someone that has my major that’s good,” Morgan Hill said.
Schools already expressing interest in the junior include Ohio State, Kentucky and Virginia. Hill has visited several schools but has yet to disclose her plans.
Coming from a basketball-oriented family of seven children, Morgan arguably draws the most comparisons with Tayler, a former Minneapolis South star who led her team to the Class 4A state title in 2009 and scored 3,888 career points. She now plays for the WNBA’s Washington franchise.
“She always pushes me to do better than her,” Morgan said. “She wants to see me succeed.”
Morgan doesn’t model her game after Tayler, who also played guard for the Tigers. Tayler has worked with Morgan on her outside shooting, but Morgan likes to drive or find openings near the basket.
“She’s more of a three-point shooter,” Morgan said. “That’s not me. I drive, take it to the hole and try and get the foul.”
Her reluctance to shoot from long range doesn’t mean she can’t do it effectively. Tigers coach Nathan McGuire likes to have her and her younger sister, Jade, shoot from long range to spread the floor. Morgan had her best three-point shooting game Dec. 9 against Minneapolis Edison, making three of seven attempts.
While Morgan looks up to Tayler, she’s also inspired by another WNBA star in Tamika Catchings, who retired at the end of last season after playing 15 years for the Indiana Fever.
“She’s just aggressive, and she just knows when she needs to score and take over,” Morgan said of Catchings.
Morgan wants to repeat the success Tayler had on the court at South. No Tigers team has been to state since 2009.
“We’re definitely going after it this year,” Morgan said.
It won’t be easy to get there. The Tigers play in a loaded Section 6 that includes the state’s top-ranked Class 4A team in Hopkins (14-0) and formidable squads in Cooper (11-2) and Wayzata (10-3). McGuire said he wants his team to take a step this year.
“We definitely should win our first section game,” Morgan Hill said.
In terms of mimicking her sister’s success, Morgan has better odds of following Tayler in reaching the state tournament than rivaling her career point total.
“I’m trying to get there, at least to 2,000,” Morgan said. “I don’t know if I’m going to get like almost to 4,000.”
Tayler’s single-game school record of 47 points could be a more realistic reach for Morgan. Earlier this season, Morgan had 39 points in a victory against Lakeville South.
“Getting close, but I don’t know, we’re going to have to see,” Morgan said.
Morgan doesn’t just focus on offense. She plays tenacious defense and can disrupt opposing guards.
“I maintain a lot,” Morgan said. “I don’t really gamble, like get up on somebody. That’s not really my game. I like to stay back and make sure they’re just not going right past me.”
Morgan, a team captain, has become a vocal leader this season. She wants to keep improving at it, too, a skill that could help the Tigers in their quest to return to the state tournament.
“I definitely am looking forward to becoming a stronger leader and speaking out and telling people where to be,” Hill said.