Steel Valley’s backfield tandem of Hill, Williams make life tough on opponents

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Tuesday, September 25, 2018 | 1:51 PM


They are best friends off the field.

Which only makes their football exploits all that more rewarding.

Steel Valley’s senior tandem of Todd Hill and Kameron Williams — both offensive and defensive catalysts — are gearing to make the 2018 season a memorable one for the Ironmen.

“Todd’s more like a brother to me,” Williams said. “Playing football with him is great. Being on the field with him, I always know he’s got my back. I am going to miss playing with him at the next level.”

Williams and Hill have been friends since their middle school days. The respect both have for each other is quickly evident.

“Kam and I been brothers since the eighth grade,” Hill said. “He’s one of the hardest workers I know, and if he wants something he works hard to get it. I think he’s going to blow up this season. Last year, he rushed over 1,000 yards, and this year he already has 11 touchdowns.”

The 5-foot-10, 226-pound Hill is a four-year starter, a three-time all-conference selection, a Trib HSSN preseason all-star, and a Howard recruit.

He started as a sophomore for Steel Valley’s WPIAL and PIAA Class 2A championship team. And last year, he recorded double-digit tackles in every game from his inside linebacking position as the Ironmen advanced to the WPIAL title game for the second year in a row.

Hill, with a 4.7 time in the 40, was recruited to play linebacker at Howard. He is averaging a remarkable 16 tackles per game in 2018.

“Our season’s going pretty well,” Hill said. “We did lose one game, but we will bounce back stronger. My expectation this year is to go back to states.

“My personal goals are to rush for over 1,000 yards and to bring back a title.”

The 5-11, 191-pound Williams, who owns a 4.5 time in the 40, rushed for 1,176 yards and 19 touchdowns a year ago. He also caught 17 passes for 199 yards and three scores.

Both players were all-conference selections in 2017, and are on track to repeat that dual honor.

“Our season has been great so far,” Williams said. “We’ve only had one bump, and we bounced right back on track.

“My season has been good, but I still have more to show. It’s just the beginning. One of my goals is to help lead my team to where we are trying to go, to make it to another WPIAL championship.”

Williams and Hill have combined for 1,102 yards and 17 touchdowns on 111 carries this season. Between them, they are averaging 275 yards rushing per game and close to 10 yards per carry.

Williams, who has a 3.8 GPA, has rambled to 672 yards and nine touchdowns on 79 carries (8.5-yard average). He also has five receptions for 99 yards and two touchdowns.

Hill has tacked on 430 yards and eight scores on just 32 carries (12.8-yard average), and again leads the team in tackles with 65. He also has scored once on an interception return.

Steel Valley coach Rod Steel offered high praise for the two players.

“They are two great student-athletes; both are high honor students,” Steele said. “They both have a phenomenal work ethic; their strengths are their football IQ and physicality. They are unselfish and complement one another. They are winners on and off the field.”

Hill, who has a 3.4 GPA, also received offers from Duquesne, Robert Morris and St. Francis (Pa.) in his recruiting process. He will play linebacker at Howard, and will major in business in college.

“Some of the reasons for choosing Howard are the coaches make you feel like it’s home,” Hill said, “and the education is one of the best in the country.”

The Steel Valley gridder said his biggest influence in his career has been former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame earlier this year.

“He was a downhill player,” Hill said, “and he had so much passion for the game.”

Williams is hoping to make enough of an impact this season to land a college offer in the near-future. He plans to major in business with a minor in sports management.

“My college recruiting, I guess I can say, has been good,” Williams said. “I don’t have any offers, but I know people are looking at me, so it’s all about patience at this point.”

His biggest influence in his career has been his mother, Takieya.

“She pushes me to be the best at whatever I do,” Williams said. “She’s the reason why I play football.”

And, oh, by the way, not only are Hill and Williams best friends, they live near each other in Homestead.

Steel Valley (3-1), which has won 23 of its past 24 regular-season games, is ranked No. 4 in Class 2A behind Shady Side Academy (4-0), Charleroi (4-0) and Washington (4-1). Burgettstown (4-0) is fifth.

SV rebounded from a 56-36 Allegheny Conference loss to Shady Side Academy with a 42-0 victory Sept. 21 at Valley.

The Ironmen travel to Glassport this Friday for a nonconference matchup with South Allegheny. The Gladiators are 4-0.

Ray Fisher is a freelance writer.

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