Sports

P.C. picks Von Vogt to lead Pirates

Every coach he's worked for has had a big influence on his career, Lance Von Vogt says.

But none, perhaps, so much as Lefty Driesell, the famed college basketball coach who amassed 786 Division I wins.

"I've always been a hard worker," Von Vogt says, recalling his stint at Georgia State University under Driesell.

"But here's a guy who put in 40 years of hard work. He allowed me to see what (it meant to be) successful as a coach in basketball."

Peninsula College supporters are hoping that knowledge translates into wins, as they hired Von Vogt last week to lead the 2010-2011 men's basketball team.

Von Vogt (pronounced "vote") succeeds Peter Stewart, who coached the Pirates to six NWAACC tournament appearances in eight seasons.

Von Vogt leaves Arizona Western College, a two-year school in Yuma known for producing top hoops talents.

And while Von Vogt says he plans to see the Pirates succeed on the court, he hopes to bring to the college talented players who are good citizens as well.

"We're going to build winning people and have a winning program out of that," Von Vogt says. "I want to make sure our program is going to represent the area well. We'll recruit guys who are going to be good people."



Recruiting a strength

As the top assistant coach at Arizona Western, Von Vogt's chief responsibility was recruiting. Before arriving at Arizona Western in 2006, he was manager of basketball operations at Eastern Kentucky University where the Division I Colonels placed fourth in the Ohio Valley Conference.

Prior to that, he was the head coach at Oxford College of Emory University, where he led the Eagles to a pair of playoff appearances. His head coaching stint was just three years, but the two playoff appearances were the first in the program's history.

His first coaching experience came under Driesell, the legendary coach who at the time (2002) was the fourth-winningest coach in NCAA history. Von Vogt was the director of basketball operations at Georgia State under Driesell from 2000-2002. During that time, the Panthers earned a trip to the 2001 NCAA Tournament and advanced to the second round with a win over Wisconsin.

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