SANTA CLARA, Calif. – The Santa Clara University men’s lacrosse team has announced the inductees for the 2016 Lacrosse Hall of Fame. A former coach, Gary Podesta, and a former player, Scott Hylen ('95), have been selected for induction this year.
Hylen, a defenseman from San Francisco, was a three-year varsity starter, a two-time all-league honoree and team captain at St. Ignatius High School. At Santa Clara, he was a standout defender who started all four years playing long-stick middie, defense and some midfield. Hylen was a significant contributor to all three Santa Clara final four teams during their run from 1992-’94, and received first team team all-WCLL honors his junior and senior seasons. He was a team captain as a senior, and also received All-American honors.
Hylen's love for, and dedication to, the sport of lacrosse extended beyond Santa Clara. He has played club lacrosse for multiple teams nationally and internationally, including the Argentinian national team, with whom he participated in the 2010 Lacrosse World Cup in England.
Hylen’s trail of influence extended to coaching and founding teams, clubs and leagues stretching throughout California and around the world. He has opened doors and provided opportunities for countless players at many levels, both nationally and internationally. Hylen earned a double major in German and Journalism from Santa Clara in 1995. He currently resides in Montreaux, Switzerland, with his wife Ana, and two children, Santiago and Lucia.
Podesta hails from Long Island, where he developed his first love and passion for lacrosse. He played for Seaford High School, and then moved on to Washington & Lee for his college career. Gary began coaching in 1979 at Bethpage High School. After moving to California, Podesta began his college coaching career at Santa Clara in 1983, where he was head coach for 25 seasons between 1983 and 2012.
Podesta has undoubtedly had more impact on Santa Clara lacrosse than any other individual in its 40-year history. Podesta was at the helm during the most successful years of the program. He recruited star players, fostered a love of the game in many beginners who began their lax careers under his tutelage. His legacy undeniably includes the blood, sweat and tears he has given to the program over most of its history.
He received numerous awards during his coaching tenure, including WCLL Coach of the Year, and was inducted into the Athletics Hall of Fame at Santa Clara as well as the US Lacrosse Northern California Chapter Hall of Fame for his many lacrosse contributions to the school and the area. Podesta has held a variety of positions with the MCLA, including a stint as MCLA president in 2013. He was president of the WCLL and Director of Game Operation for the San Francisco Dragons of the MLL during their time in the Bay Area.
It is beyond fitting for him to be inducted this year to the Santa Clara Lacrosse Hall of Fame and be honored by a program he has given so much of his time, effort and energy to over the past 33 years. Podesta currently works for Chevron in Danville, Calif., and lives in Gilroy with his wife, Lyndsey.
The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place at the Santa Clara lacrosse alumni banquet on Friday, Oct. 7, 2016, at Fiorillos Restaurant in Santa Clara from 7-9 p.m. A link to register for this event can be found on the team's website. Questions about the event should be directed to SCU head coach Greg Mengis.