From Prettyman to Palo Alto, Golub ‘19 lights up the club basketball circuit

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Liliana Greyf, Staff Writer

Kate Golub ‘19, who was on the Girls Varsity Basketball (GVB) team for four years, loves the spirit of her old team so much that she FaceTimed in to watch their championship game this year. Now, Golub is in her freshman year at Stanford University where she plays basketball on a club team and was recently named Club Athlete of the Week.
Golub began playing basketball at age 8, at Yorkville, a basketball league in Manhattan. After graduating from the Middle Division basketball team at the school, Golub joined GVB as a freshman.
Golub earned the Club Athlete of the Week award due to her strong performance in recent basketball games, she said. “You get nominated by someone on the team and then they decide based on the nominations.”
Golub remembers GVB as one of her favorite parts of Horace Mann, she said. Her time on the team during her senior year is especially memorable, she said. “We were Ivy League Champs for the first time in 21 years,” she said. “We made it to the state championships. I can’t even think of one thing [I remember most] because every day was so great.”
Associate Athletic Director and GVB Coach Ray Barile watched Golub flourish over her four years on the team, he said. During her first year on the team, Golub was one of five freshman girls. “It was tough on them but Kate was the reason they held on,” Barile said. “She really led them well. That whole group worked really hard.”
Golub loved basketball and was determined to improve after her freshman year, Barile said. Over the summer, she worked on her running, style, and form, really honing her skills. “She knew she had to improve specific parts of her game [like running], so that’s what she did,” he said. “Very few people would do that.”
As time went on, Golub’s basketball skills and enthusiasm for the team only grew. “If you had asked me four years ago if she would ever be starting, I would have said no,” Barile said. But by the time she was a senior, Golub was not only starting for the team, she was also a captain. “She was like another coach on the court.”
It is no surprise that Golub remembers her senior year on the team so fondly. Barile said that during her last year on the team, Golub worked hard to ensure they would succeed. “She really understood everything we did on the court,” he said. “She knew every player, every offense move, she helped us function as a team.”
Even when the team was only practicing, Golub was attuned to her peers and community. “When we were working on our game, she would help out anyone who needed it,” Barile said. “She was a truly special person who really related to her teammates well, and they all did to her.” Golub’s attitude towards the game was what led her to win an award from the Basketball Coaches Association of New York during her senior year. “The award was for someone who puts the team’s needs in front of hers,” Barile said.
The connections that Golub made with people on the team have lasted even past high school. Golub still talks to her old teammates and has kept in touch with Barile.
Golub’s college club team is very different from high school basketball, she said. In general, the atmosphere is more relaxed about the game itself, which doesn’t allow for the same kind of community to be formed, she said. “The structures of the teams are really different.” This is due to the amount of time the team spends practicing, Golub said. “We don’t practice as frequently and we have fewer games, so less time together prevents us from becoming as close as we were to our high school teams.”
Specifically, the two teams practice and play other schools in different ways. “We practice twice a week for two hours,” she said. In high school, we practiced five to six times a week for two to three hours.” The number of games has also changed for Golub, she said. In total, Golub played eight games this year. In high school, she played at least 20 games a season.
Because the college team is part of a younger league, her club team only plays two schools throughout the course of the season: San Jose State University and California State University, Chico. Her team doesn’t have a standard coach. “It’s entirely student-run,” she said.
This more relaxed approach to basketball has affected Golub’s experience both positively and negatively. Because Golub in college participated in fewer practices, she feels her skills have gotten worse since she graduated high school. The decrease in time spent with the team has also affected the connections she has made, Golub said. “I love all the people on [the club team], but you don’t get as close,” she said. “There’s not as much of a strong community.”
However, playing basketball in college has still been really enjoyable for Golub, she said. “We do have some structure, but we’re kind of playing more for fun. In high school, it’s also fun, but it’s more serious.”
Now that Golub has completed her first year as a club athlete, she is excited for her future in basketball. “Next year, I’m going to be the president of the club team,” she said. “I just hope to continue to play as long as I can.”