April 18, 2022
Edenton, NC- There’s a new leader for the Steamers.
Justin Hill, the current head coach at Currituck County High School, has been hired as the Steamers’ head coach for the 2022 season.
Hill brings over 20 years of managerial experience at the high school level, including the last 14 years as the manager of Currituck County High School’s varsity team. Working with collegiate players is a new chapter of coaching that he’s looking forward to.
“I’m excited to work with talented guys that are serious about the game,” Hill said. “That’s what I’m passionate about and I’m looking forward to this opportunity.”
Hill has lifelong experience with the area, growing up playing and eventually coaching in and around Edenton. He grew up in Elizabeth City and attended Currituck schools. The Steamers new manager even has ties to Historic Hicks Field from his playing days.
“When I was in high school I played at Historic Hicks Field, and I was on Edenton’s Post 40 Legion team in high school,” Hill said. “I’ve been in a lot of ball games at that park and have a lot of fond memories of summer ball in Edenton in that atmosphere.”
Hill’s history in Edenton, as well as his ability to help young players grow, made him an easy choice for Steamers’ general manager Tyler Russell.
“The Steamers are very excited about the hiring of Justin Hill. He brings a strong passion for the game of baseball and a willingness to help our players grow. During his many years at Currituck, he has molded numerous guys into great players, and has seen many of his men go on to the next level,” Russell said. “We are excited to see where he will lead our storied franchise on the field. We project nothing but great success for him and our players as we move through the upcoming season.”
Hill’s familiarity of the area brings an understanding of what fans of Edenton want to see from their team. He’s conscious of the team’s importance to the area and the support the team has behind them.
“Edenton still has that small town feel to it. When there’s a game going on, everyone knows about it…. That’s something that’s special to me, that small town feel and local people getting behind their guys,” Hill said. “My goal is to make the community of Edenton proud of the product that’s on the field. The wins and losses will take care of themselves.”
Hill’s been around the game long enough to know what qualities a team needs to win. His teams and his coaching style follow a similar theme.
Playing the game the right way.
“Respecting the game and playing it hard, that’s the only way I know how to practice and play,” Hill said. “That’s what I preach all the time, being accountable.”
Hill follows up Marshall McDonald, who spent the last two seasons guiding the teal and black. McDonald compiled a 37-16 record in league play as manager of the Steamers.
McDonald led the team in 2020 to its highest winning percentage in a single season in team history (21-5; .807 win percentage). He also coached elite talent like Houston Wright (2020 PCL MVP), Jake Rice (9th round pick in 2021 by Arizona Diamondbacks) and Joe Kemlage (2021 free agent signing by San Francisco Giants).
“The Steamers organization greatly appreciates all of the hard work over the last two years by Marshall McDonald. His stellar enthusiasm for the game was incomparable,” said Russell. “He made a huge impact on and off the field for our players and our fans. We wish him nothing but the best with his new position as the Head Coach at Catawba Valley Community College.”
McDonald posted a message to social media in which he thanked the Steamers and fans for rejuvenating his love for summer baseball. He ended his message with one last thank you to Edenton.
“To the fans and town of Edenton you will have a special place in mine and my wife’s heart forever,” McDonald wrote. “I can never express how much these last two summers have changed my life. But, for now I must move on and answer to life’s ever-changing call. Much love! Roll Clams! FOTC!”
Hill’s first game as manager will be on June 3rd when the Steamers take on the Clayton Clovers.