Beaver Falls, PA – It didn’t take Geneva College very long to find a successor to legendary coach Ron Galbreath for its head women’s basketball coach position. The Golden Tornadoes simply went back to its recent assistant coach history and named one of its own all-time greats as the new interim head coach. Renee Drake, who sat alongside Galbreath has an assistant for three years and also competed as one of Geneva’s all-time greats, accepted the position on Thursday.
Drake follows Amy Russin’s one year stint as head coach a year ago and will take over on an interim basis for the upcoming campaign. Drake was called into duty after Galbreath announced his retirement from coaching a just over a week ago. Galbreath had spent six years coaching the Geneva women’s program at the end of a head coaching career that spanned 35 years. During the years of 2002-2008 Galbreath had won the second most games in school history behind only Kim Gall, who ironically now serves as Geneva’s athletic director. Galbreath posted an overall record of 111-48. During the years of 2004-2007, Renee Drake sat alongside Galbreath as his number one assistant coach. In fact, Drake had a hand in the recruiting process for several of the current team members.
Drake, formerly Renee Freeman, played for the Golden Tornadoes from 1999-2002. She is currently 9th on Geneva’s all-time scoring list with 1153 points and 6th in rebounding with 766 for her career. Drake graduated from Geneva College in December 2003 with a B.S. Education degree. She also earned a Masters of Education degree in Reading from Geneva, in May, 2008.
After leaving Geneva College as a coach in the spring of 2007, Drake landed a coaching and teaching job at Western Beaver High School. She spent two years as the head varsity basketball coach and one season as the varsity softball coach.
“This is a very exciting opportunity for me,” said Drake. “I love Geneva College and am very much looking forward to getting back into college coaching. Coach Galbreath made a huge impression on me as a coach and player and it is an honor to be following in his footsteps.”
“This was the obvious choice to make for our women’s basketball program,” said Geneva athletic director Kim Gall. “Renee played in this program and graduated from Geneva so her familiarity with us certainly gives her an advantage and will certainly lessen the learning curve between her and our student-athletes. We are excited Renee is again serving at Geneva College.”
Geneva’s women’s basketball team opens the 2009-10 season at home on November 16 at the LaRoche College tournament. The Golden Tornadoes open the home schedule on November 21 against Point Park.
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College’s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education. Geneva is a founding member of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).
Geneva is the first college in the country to offer a five-year B.S. /M.S. degree in cardiovascular science technology through Inova Heart and Vascular Institute in Virginia.