William C. Kavan
William C. Kavan
Hometown: Garden City, NY
Team: Lacrosse

William C. Kavan '72
Hometown: Garden City, NY
Sport: Lacrosse
Year Inducted: 1985

Defenseman William C. Kavan came to Brown from the heart of lacrosse country - Garden City, Long Island, where he was a mainstay of the Garden City High School team. Coach Cliff Stevenson remembers Kavan as "a big, strong young man, who had an excellent attitude and worked hard in practice." By the time Kavan was starting his junior year for the Bruins, Stevenson was making a pre-season prediction that the 6'3", 205-pound defenseman would be named an All-American. The coach was proven right: Kavan joined his teammate, senior attack Bob Scalise, on the University Division second-team All America squad. Kavan also made first-team All-Ivy and All-New England that year. He repeated all three honors in his senior year, and in addition was selected to play in the annual North-South game, in which he started. "He's in the top group of all defensemen I've coached at Brown," says Stevenson of Kavan, "and I had some darn good players. I'd say that in his junior and senior years, Bill was among the top ten defensemen in the country." Dom Starsia '74, another All-American who now coaches Brown's varsity lacrosse team, points out that during Kavan's varsity career Brown won 31 games. "I'd say that's the most career wins for any three-year player since lacrosse became a varsity sport at Brown," Starsia says. In all three of his years as a starter for the varsity, Kavan was matched against every opponent's best attackman - the ultimate tribute for a defenseman. "I remember there was one kid at Yale, Tom Fagan," recalls Starsia, "who was an All-American. Yale was really good then, and Fagan was one of the leading scorers every year in the Ivy League. Bill played opposite Fagan all three years, and he shit him out." It is such shut-outs of All-American-caliber-attackmen that Bill Kavan considers the highlights of his college career - that, plus playing for Brown in the NCAA quarterfinals in 1971, and serving as captain of the team in 1972. "As a captain, Billy was slightly intimidating," Starsia recalls. "He was so big and independent. But he was a source of great inspiration for us - a big, aggressive leader. He was like a warrior leading us into battle, and there was no question in our minds that we were going to get great playing from him. When the whistle blew, you could count on Billy." Stevenson says that Kavan continued to improve as a defenseman throughout his years at Brown. "He improved in overall skills, in strength, in stickhandling, and in defensive techniques. And he was a good leader on the field. The team looked to him with confidence. One of Bill's assets," Stevenson adds, "was his positive attitude. He was a fun-loving kid, and that's important. Lacrosse players are more gregarious than soccer players, and Bill certainly wasn't an introvert!" Kavan continued his lacrosse career after graduation with the Tobay Lacrosse Club and the New York Lacrosse Club. In 1973 he was a starter in the North-South Club All-Star Game. Today he and his wife, Maria, live on Long Island, where Kavan is executive vice president of the Berkley Group, an insurance company in Mineola, New York.