AROUND TOWN: Former BYU Coach Rose Guest Speaker For Coaches Vs. Cancer Gala
Former Brigham Young University men’s basketball coach Dave Rose will be the keynote speaker for the annual Coaches vs. Cancer soiree, slated May 18 at Glenmaura National Golf Club. Rose retired at the end of March after posting a 348-115 record with the Cougars, his second successful stint with a team nicknamed the Cougars. The 61-year-old was co-captain of the University of Houston team, dubbed Phi Slama Jama with Clyde Drexler and Hakeem Olajuwon, that went to the Final Four and lost in the championship game on a last-second dunk to North Carolina State in 1983, a moment better known for the reaction of the Wolfpack’s coach, the late Jim Valvano. Ironically, Rose, like Valvano, has had his own battle with cancer, beating a rare form of pancreatic cancer that was discovered in 2009. Rose was the Mountain West Coach of the Year three times in his 14 seasons as head coach at BYU. This year’s Spring Fling will tip off at 6 p.m. at Glenmaura. Putting a bow on its 11th campaign, the Coaches vs. Cancer crusade of the Lackawanna League and Wyoming Valley Conference has raised more than $2 million to help area residents in their fight with cancer. Kudos to drive chairman Andrew Kettel and everyone whose hard work helps so many. Pillar of the hunting community If you had asked Kyle Pillar a few years ago what path his career would take, there was a good chance he’d have said golf. After all, his dad, John Sr., is the director of golf at Woodloch Springs and Kyle has been around the game and industry as long as he can remember. But when the Wallenpaupack Area grad and All-Region golfer left West Chester University in his freshman year, he didn’t know what was next. Turns out, his other hobby — hunting — would offer him the chance of a lifetime. Now, Pillar, 19, thinks he’s found his calling, working for Premier Outfitters in western Kentucky, where he is a guide for whitetail and turkey hunts. “I was at a low point, I would say, when I left college and left West Chester,” Pillar said. “It was all like it was meant to be. I do believe, and a lot of guys down here preach that everything does happen for a reason. This is one of those things, it just fell in my lap at the right time. “You’ve heard my dad say a million times, if you love what you do you never work a day in your life. And that’s basically every single day I live down here. It doesn’t feel like work. I want to wake up and do it. It’s like living the dream. It’s what my dad does and it’s what I want to do.” His dad and a few other fellows around the Lake region, — Ralph Scartelli, Rob Fritz and Skip Regenski — helped turn Kyle into an avid outdoorsman. A golf connection, Justin Rinas from the Philadelphia Section PGA, got him hooked up with Premier Outfitters, and it was an instant match. “I went down and had a great time, and the owner asked me to come back down and do some filming in velvet season,” Pillar said. “When I went back down, he and I had a good conversation. “This is what I want to do. This is my dream. I mean, I love golf, but all I’ve ever known my whole life is golf. Being able to experience this and see different places and travel, I’ve kind of learned that hunting is more my passion than golf is.” Turns out, he’s a better guide than golfer — and he still is a very good golfer — leading clients on the hunting opportunity of a lifetime at the 20,000-acre site with two lodges. “It’s like the Augusta National of whitetail hunting,” Pillar said. “It’s the best team I’ve ever been a part of. Top to bottom, world class guys. “Our clients get to experience what Kentucky is about, the world-class whitetail hunting that we provide and I’m lucky enough to be a part of that.” And one Congratulations to former Bishop O’Hara running back and All-Region pick Joe Holland and his bride, the former Lindsey Weidow, who played basketball and ran track at Scranton High School. The couple welcomed their second child, Joseph, on April 29. The future standout checked in at 6 pounds, 9 ounces. He joins his sister, Stella, 2, at home. MARTY MYERS is a Times-Tribune sports writer. His Around Town column appears on Sundays. To contact him, email email@example.com, call 570-348-9100, ext. 5437 or follow him on Twitter @mmyersTT.