Hall Jr. was born into a legendary swimming family; his father, Gary Hall Sr., won three Olympic medals and his grandfather, Charles Keating Jr., was an NCAA champion. Hall Jr. launched his career at Brophy College Preparatory. A sprint specialist known for his flamboyant entrances, Hall represented the U.S. in the 1996, 2000 and 2004 Olympics, winning 10 medals - five gold, three silver, two bronze. After his first Olympic appearance, Hall was diagnosed with diabetes and, as a world-class athlete afflicted with diabetes, became an inspiration to people with the disease.
Oscarson’s Chaparral Firebirds won five state softball titles during his 22-year tenure, which he finished in 2003 with an overall 450-122-3 record. Oscarson played baseball at Saguaro High School and was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 1970. He decided not to sign and instead attended Mesa Community College, where he played on back-to-back national champions. Oscarson played for Arizona State in 1973 and 1974. Oscarson also served as a teacher and athletics director and played a pivotal role in establishing athletics programs at Scottsdale Unified School District middle schools, enabling children to participate on organized sports teams.
Grace, a first baseman, finished his 16-year Major League Baseball career with the Diamondbacks. Popular among fans and media, Grace was a key part of the 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks, who won the Valley’s only major professional sports championship. Although Grace had more hits than any other player in the 1990s, he is best known for a single off Mariano Rivera that sparked the Diamondbacks’ dramatic 9th-inning rally to defeat the New York Yankees in Game 7 of the 2001 World Series. Grace, who retired with a career .303 batting average, works as a television analyst and instructor for the Diamondbacks.
The winningest coach in NCAA Division I softball history, Candrea established an enduring dynasty in Tucson. Under Candrea, the Arizona Wildcats have won eight national championships and appeared in 22 Women's College World Series. He has guided the program to 11 conference championships, including the 2017 Pac-12 title, which earned Candrea his 12th conference Coach of the Year Award. Candrea has also been named the national Coach of the Year four times. He also coached the U.S. Olympic softball team to a gold medal in 2004 and a silver in 2008.
Told he was too small to play football, Tillman led ASU to the 1997 Rose Bowl as a hard-hitting linebacker and earned three consecutive selections to the Pac-10 All-Academic team. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from ASU’s W.P. Carey School of Business with a degree in Marketing. After the Arizona Cardinals selected him in the 7th round of the 1998 NFL draft, Tillman became the team’s starting safety and broke the franchise record for tackles with 224 in 2000. In the spring of 2002, Tillman walked away from football to join the U.S. Army. He was killed in Afghanistan on April 22, 2004.
Sister Lynn, Xavier College Preparatory’s Vice Principal for Activities and Athletic Director, has coached the Xavier Girls’ Golf Team to 35 Arizona 6A/Division I golf titles, including 16 in a row, both national records. Since she arrived at Xavier in 1974, Sister Lynn has led Xavier to a 457-25 record, a .948 winning percentage. Under Sister Lynn’s tutelage, more than 55 percent of her golfers have earned collegiate golf scholarships. Sister Lynn has a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University, a master’s degree from the University of Iowa, and multiple honors and distinctions for her groundbreaking career in the field of Athletic Direction. She entered the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a Catholic Order of Women Religious, in 1967.