May 15, 2010 - National Lacrosse League (NLL) - Rochester Knighthawks
By Craig Rybczynski - May 15, 2010 Nine years ago, Fairport native Tim Soudan helped usher in professional field lacrosse at Frontier Field. On August 15th, he will return to the downtown stadium to receive a brick in the Frontier Field Walk of Fame. He will join Rochester Americans defenseman Rory Fitzpatrick and the other honorees at the ceremony, which will take place prior to the Rochester Red Wings\' Triple-A baseball game. "I always enjoyed playing at that park. We drew tons of fans," said Soudan about the 2001 and 2002 seasons. "I have fond memories of playing there."
Soudan was a lacrosse pioneer in Rochester, helping establish the Knighthawks in 1995 and the Rochester Rattlers (Major League Lacrosse) in 2001. This summer he will become the first Knighthawks and/or Rattlers lacrosse player to be enshrined in the Walk of Fame. The 42-year-old was elated and shocked when he got the news of his selection.
"I was excited," said Soudan. "I know I have been on the ballot for a couple of years, but it was a surprise. At my age, it\'s nice to be recognized."
Soudan played 14 seasons of professional lacrosse in Rochester during his indoor and outdoor career. The Fairport High School star and two-time All-American at UMass began his professional career in 1991 with the New England Blazers of the Major Indoor Lacrosse League. He would play three more seasons with the Boston Blazers, before coming home to play for the expansion Knighthawks in 1995.
Soudan led the first-year Knighthawks to the MILL title game and to a victory in the1997 MILL Championship. He was a key component in the team\'s string of 11 playoff appearances in 11 seasons (1995-2005). While playing for the K-Hawk in the winter season, he made the transition to the outdoor game in 2001 with the Rochester Rattlers. From 2001-03, he played for the Rattlers and guided the team to the inaugural MLL playoffs in 2001. He retired from pro lacrosse after the 2005 indoor season. In 2009 he was inducted as a member of the Knighthawks inaugural Hall of Fame Class.
"I was part of it...definitely a pioneer," said Soudan about being a founding member of two Rochester lacrosse teams. "I was pretty fortunate to come back to Rochester after starting my career in Boston. I was fortunate to play lacrosse in front of my family and friends.
"I got to go back to school and get my degree and become a Phys Ed teacher," added Soudan. "Lacrosse has given me so much. I was just glad to be a part of it."
Soudan resides in Fairport with his wife, Colleen, and kids Kaitlyn and Tanner. He works as a physical education teacher for Fairport Central Schools and is also an assistant lacrosse coach at Fairport HS. Soudan recently completed his second year in the Knighthawks front office, serving as the director of player personnel in 2010.