ELKINS - Samantha Hall, a rising senior at Elkins High School, owns seven state swimming titles, and now she can add the honor of being named a USA Swimming Scholastic All-American to her already impressive resume.
"I'm honored to be named as an All-American," Hall said. "It's something I've always worked for and now it's finally here. It's a very exciting achievement."
The USA Swimming Scholastic All-American is a prestigious award based on both academic and athletic accomplishments.
Hall holds seven state titles, including three consecutive championships in the 50-yard freestyle. As a junior, she broke a state record as well, turning in a time of 24.01 to capture the 50 freestyle.
To go along with the athletic achievements, she also carries a cumulative GPA of 3.7.
"I love to win," Hall said. "I'm very competitive. I get a high from racing.
"I like putting it all out there in one race and giving it my all. That's what I love."
Hall is scheduled to speak on a panel discussion at the Randolph Community Arts Center's Smithsonian Institution Exhibit: "Hometown Teams," at 6 p.m. Monday.
During the Smithsonian Exhibit, Hall will be talking about the dedication it takes to be an elite athlete and scholar. Six days a week, Hall drives an hour and twenty minutes, each way, from Elkins to Clarksburg, to swim for two hours. She's been doing this for the past two years. Hall said she's been swimming year-round for the past six years.
"It's not easy that's for sure," Hall said. "Swimming has pretty much become my life. My friends stopped inviting me to the movies and stuff because they know I'm swimming. It's what I'm dedicated to."
Among other achievements, Hall has been named to the first team All-State squad and first team Big 10 All-Conference squads all three years of high school.
Hall is also a member of the National YMCA Team that will be travelling to Indianapolis for the YMCA Long Course National Championships, scheduled for July 28-Aug. 1.