Family success; Davion Hill joins brothers as 1,000-point scorers at Neumann
Seconds after the Indiana Pacers drafted Alize Johnson three years ago, the St. John Neumann graduate embraced younger brothers David and Davion Hill. That was Alize’s moment, but the family shared the joy. Last winter when David scored his 1,000th career point as a Neumann junior, he hugged Davion and the family took some quick photos. That was his moment, but the joy spread throughout the family. When David whipped a third-quarter pass toward Davion Tuesday night at the Catholic Community Center, Davion’s big moment arrived. And again, it was a family event with his brothers and parents being equally excited. Davion continued enhancing his family’s tremendous basketball tradition while carving out his own niche Tuesday when he scored his 1,000th career point and helped Neumann defeat Millville, 83-42, in the District 4 Class A quarterfinals. Davion became the third brother since 2014 to reach 1,000 points and the first area sophomore to reach that milestone since Milton’s Tony Fannick 15 years ago. “When I heard that horn sound and knew that I had it, it was definitely special to me, especially to join Alize and David on those banners,” Davion said after scoring a game-high 25 points. “To know when we’re alumni we can come back and see our names up there when we’re visiting is special.” “It was definitely special to see him score that 1,000 points at such a young age. It’s crazy,” David said after producing a triple-double which included 18 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds. “Just seeing him put in all the hard work to get those 1,000 points is amazing.” No area boys’ players in the 2000s has reached 1,000 career points quicker than Davion. The sophomore guard earned first team all-state honors last year and needed just 45 games to join the exclusive club, averaging 22.3 points per game along the way. “It’s unreal. It’s unbelievable,” Neumann coach Jamie Spencer said. “He’s a great kid and I’m really happy for him.” Davion needed 23 points entering Tuesday’s game to reach 1,000 and started strong, scoring 12 in the first quarter as Neumann landed an early haymaker and built a 22-6 lead. Davion had 16 points by halftime and as the third quarter progressed it was not if he would reach 1,000 but when. That moment arrived with 1 minute, 56 seconds remaining. Keon Burkholder grabbed a defensive rebound and found David streaking downcourt. David beat his defender to the basket as Davion trailed. As David went up, he scooped a backward pass that Davion corralled and quickly turned into the milestone points. “It meant something big getting the pass from David. That meant a lot to me,” Davion said. “I was just glad to get it over with. As much as I wanted to say I was just worried about playoffs, it was in the back of my mind. Now that I got it over with, we can just focus on trying to win and move on.” Johnson moved on to Missouri State and the NBA after graduating from Neumann in 2014 and helping the Knights capture two district championships. David will play at Towson, has topped 1,500 career points and both he and his brother helped Neumann win last year’s district title. Davion already has scored 1,000 points, received multiple Division I offers and joined his brothers as all-state selections. Johnson led the way, but both David and Davion have left their own mark. Still, all their accomplishments are tied into one. All three brothers have complemented each other, supported one another and made each other better. When one achieves something big it feels like they all do, and Tuesday was a moment to savor. “Basketball is definitely huge in our family. It runs deep in our family, so this is special,” Davion said. “It means a lot to us so just to get out there with each other and play together and get knowledge from Alize definitely sets a bar for us.” Johnson blazed the trail, David followed and now Davion may be in the best position of all. The younger brother has been able to watch and learn as Johnson and David have started their ascents. Knowing the ins and outs gave him a head start when he arrived as a freshman last year and quickly became one of the state’s premier Class A players. “Growing up we’ve all stuck together. We’ve learned from each other, pushed each other around in the backyard and gotten after it,” David said. “He’s definitely going to be the best out of all of us because he’s seen everything.” But while Davion reached a lofty scoring goal so young, he is much more than a scorer. The sophomore played point guard for the first time last year and emerged as a young leader who frequently was among the game leaders in assists, rebounds and steals. He has gone back to his natural shooting guard position this year, but nothing else has changed. Davion still has a motor that does not stop and still fills the stat sheet on a regular basis. When he was within two points, Davion made a steal and started a 2-on1 fastbreak. He could have gone after 1,000, but Davion instead sucked in the defender and found Hanief Clay for a layup. He is a terrific scorer, but more important, Davion is a complete player. “It’s really hard to fathom,” Spencer said. “He just has a switch where he just goes. He’s incredible.” “His work ethic definitely takes him to a whole other level. On and off the court he’s always working and doing all the right things to become better,” David said. “He just has to keep that up and the future for him is going to be crazy.” The craziest thing? Davion might just be getting started.