Gary Gait and his twin brother Paul, led the Orange to three NCAA championships with Gary picking up 1988 NCAA player of the year. On to pro and the success only continued: three Mann Cups (two with the WLA’s Victoria Shamrocks), three Major League Lacrosse titles, three MILL/National Lacrosse League titles, the 2004 Heritage Cup, and the 2006 World Lacrosse Championship representing Canada. Individually, Gait won the NLL MVP award a record six times, the MILL championship game MVP twice, and 2005 MLL MVP. He retired as the NLL’s all-time leader in goals (634), assists (526), and points (1160) and remains amongst the all-time leaders despite being passed by a handful of longer-serving players. He added sixty-six goals in twenty-two career playoff games.
Perhaps the Gait brothers’ greatest contribution however is the way they revolutionized the way the modern game is played and helped usher in the current professional game’s popularity across North America. Only the second player in NLL history to have his jersey number retired, Gary Gait has been inducted into the US Lacrosse National Hall of Fame and was a charter inductee into the NLL Hall of Fame.
Four-time All-American for the Syracuse Orange men’s lacrosse team from 1987-90 (including first-team honors from 1988 to 1990), and was on three NCAA championship-winning teams. He twice won the Lt. Raymond Enners Award, given to the most outstanding college lacrosse player, in 1988 and 1990. Gait holds the Syracuse career goals record at 192 and the single-season goals record at 70, an NCAA record until 2008. In 1997, the NCAA Lacrosse Committee named Gait, along with his twin brother and Syracuse teammate, Paul, to the 25th Anniversary Lacrosse team.
He played in the NLL for 17 years, winning Rookie of the Year in 1991, earning league MVP honors for five straight years, from 1995 to ’99 and winning All-Pro honors each season. Gait led the league in points and goals seven times, won three league championships and finished his indoor career with 1,091 points, a league record at the time. Gait also played five seasons in MLL from 2001 to 2005, winning the league title three times and co-MVP honors in 2005.
He helped Canada win the 2006 World Lacrosse Championship, the country’s first world championship since 1978, by scoring four goals in the final against the United States.