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EAST COAST PASTIME BECOMES WEST COAST RITUAL

EAST COAST PASTIME BECOMES WEST COAST RITUAL

When we meet for our interview it is a sunny California morning and Scott Hochstadt, or “Hochy” as his friends affectionately call him, pulls up in his Black Cadillac Escalade with his dog in the back seat. Shades on, a thick head of dark hair, and rock star good looks, he is the epitome of West coast cool. However, Scott has not always called California his home. He played lacrosse at the prestigious NCAA University of Maryland. Scott was lacrosse hero to those who love the sport. He was drafted by the Buffalo Bandits and also won a sponsorship with STX.

After graduating with an art degree, he drove across the country to spend the summer in CA because he wanted to “relax and paint.” Since he was in CA already, STX sent him as a representative to various training camps on the West coast. As he traveled, Scott began to see a serious need for the development of lacrosse on the West coast, and he began to envision doing something about it. He began to develop camps and travel programs and founded the Starz Lacrosse club. After eight years Starz Lacrosse is now not only the largest club program on the West coast, but the largest club lacrosse organization in the country.

In 2006, the STARZ foundation launched “City Starz,” a program that focuses on bringing lacrosse to kids in areas that wouldn’t normally have access to lacrosse such as South Central Los Angeles. Through generous donations, the Starz Foundation provides the City Starz players with everything they need to play the sport including scholarships to attend sleepover camps. The program immediately took off, with close to 100 students involved in the first few months. It is evident that Scott’s leadership and passion for the sport has rubbed off on the participating students.

Living in LA for the past eight years, Scott is an insider in the Hollywood scene, and you’ll find him mingling with anyone from with anyone from music and television executive, down to the young cast of the new 90210. This has allowed him to bring lacrosse into the entertainment industry, and through his influence the sport is becoming progressively mainstreamed. A few years ago he was asked to help out with a lacrosse scene for the TV show House, and he now works with Adam Sandler’s company Happy Madison as a technical sports advisor, working with directors and assistants shooting scenes for various movies and shows such as 90210. With a confidently cool smile, Scott says, “Expect to see more and more lacrosse in TV and movies in years to come.” .

It is clear that Scott’s talent for and love of lacrosse which burgeoned on the East coast has now rippled beyond the boundaries of his home town and has managed to transform the awareness and enjoyment of the sport on the West coast. And he is clearly not done yet; with his creative mind and driven spirit, the history of lacrosse is not likely to stay the same after Scott Hochstadt has had his say.

– J. Hope Casselman

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