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Fellowship of Christian Athletes Lacrosse Honors National Hall of Famer Tom Hayes with 2018 Peter Kohn Award


KANSAS CITY, Mo.—This coming weekend, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA, www.fca.org) lacrosse ministry will honor Tom Hayes, current Olympic Vision Director of the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL), with the 2018 Peter Kohn Award.

Hayes will be presented with the award at the U.S. Lacrosse National Convention in Baltimore on Saturday, Jan. 20. For the past 29 years, FCA Lacrosse has had a presence at the convention, and this year will once again host a free Fellowship Lunch on Saturday.

After being told about the honor, Hayes responded, I knew Peter Kohn from 1978 till he passed away. Peter was one of those unforgettable persons that could be counted on to complete any task given to him. He was a fixture at our early USA teams as a volunteer equipment manager and staff assistant. He helped at all of our team tryouts and was a key member of the 1978, 1982 and 1986 team USA support staffs. He always had a smile on his face and was a true gentleman. I counted on Peter to do the many jobs that came up during the course of an international tournament, including wake-up calls for the players and staff. His announcement every morning of, ‘It’s time to win the world championship!’ definitely underscored the reason we were representing the USA lacrosse community.”

Added FCA Lacrosse Director Ryan Horanburg, “We are thrilled to honor a great man who has done and continues to do so much for the sport of lacrosse. Tom has had generational impact on this sport we all love, impacting players at the youth, high school, college and international levels. We congratulate Coach Hayes for not only his many accomplishments on the field, but also for the ways in which he touched the lives of so many through the sport of lacrosse.”

As the Olympic Vision Director for FIL, Tom Hayes chairs the Olympic Vision Committee, which has the responsibility to progress the inclusion of lacrosse within the Olympic Games program.

A resident of Carbondale, Pennsylvania, Hayes, a 1989 United States National Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee, led Sewanhaka High School to consecutive championships in 1956, 1957 and 1958 as a midfielder and earned first-team All-County honors in his senior year. He went on to Penn State University, where he earned All-American honors twice and led the Nittany Lions to the conference championship in 1962.

Hayes began his coaching career at Penn State as the freshman team coach in 1967 and became the assistant varsity coach in 1968. He then moved to Drexel University, serving as head coach from 1969 to 1974. His teams made two USILA Tournament appearances, and he produced three All-Americans. After five years at Drexel, Hayes became the head coach at Rutgers University and remained in that capacity from 1975 to 2000. His teams were ranked in the Top 20 from 1975 to 1998. Rutgers made five NCAA Tournament appearances during his tenure and produced 57 All-Americans. His overall coaching record was 243-162 over 32 seasons.

Hayes has also been involved with the International Lacrosse Federation (ILF) throughout his career. He served as the organization’s president from 1994 to 2002, vice-president from 1974 to 1978, secretary-treasurer from 1978 to 1982, general delegate from 1974 to 1994, marketing committee chair from 2001 to present, and development committee chair from 2003 to present. In recognition for his contributions to international lacrosse, the ILF’s U-19 championship trophy is named in his honor.

Hayes was on the U.S. Lacrosse Foundation Board of Directors from 1985 to 1987 and was president of the U.S. Lacrosse Coaches Association from 1990 to 1994. He was USILA Rules Committee Chairman from 1975 to 1979 and USILA International Games Committee Chairman from 1973 to 1994. He was the U.S. General Manager of Team USA in 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986 and 1990, as well as a Pre-Olympic Tournament Committee member in 1984.

His many honors include: head coach of the North-South College All-Star game in 1977 and 1998; USILA Man of the Year 1974 and 1987; assistant coach in the North-South All-Star Game in 1975; Long Island Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee in 1989; Sewanhaka High School Hall of Fame inductee in 1996; New Jersey Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee in 1997; USILA Frenchy Julien Service Award recipient in 2000; and New Jersey Lacrosse Man of the Year winner in 2000. He was inducted into the United States National Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 1989.

The Peter Kohn Award is named for one of the most beloved and unique figures in the lacrosse world. For 50 years, Kohn was connected to the sport of lacrosse. The subject of a recent documentary chronicling his life, Kohn started as a field manager for the Park School in Baltimore in 1954. His role as team manager continued with the U.S. National Team from 1978 to 1998, the North-South All-Star game for 25-plus years, club teams in the United States Club Lacrosse Association for more than 20 years, Middlebury College from 1981 to 2003 and numerous other lacrosse events over the years. The lacrosse field at Middlebury is named in his honor, and he was previously inducted into the U.S. Lacrosse New England Hall of Fame.

Kohn served as a volunteer with FCA Lacrosse from 1988 until his death in 2009. He was, and still is, one of the most recognized figures in the game of lacrosse.

Each year, the Peter Kohn Award, established in 1998, is given to a member of the lacrosse community who best represents the scripture, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13) and exemplifies the Christian principles of character, integrity, excellence and teamwork on and off the lacrosse field.

Past Peter Kohn Award recipients include:

Nominations for future award winners can be made by submitting names to FCA Lacrosse at fcalax@gmail.com or by calling (443) 212-8131. For more information about attending or sponsoring this year’s FCA Lacrosse lunch and the Peter Kohn Award, email fcalax@gmail.com.

Read more about Fellowship of Christian Athletes here, visit FCA’s web site at www.fca.org, its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/fcafans or its Twitter feed @fcanews.