Mahaney takes the reins

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Mahaney takes the reins

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Jeff Mahaney, after coaching girls’ soccer for 30 years (five of which at Drake), is making the leap from coaching girls’ junior varsity (JV) to varsity this upcoming season. 

Growing up in St Louis, Missouri, Mahaney’s love for soccer started at a young age.

 “St. Louis was like the soccer capital at the time. Kids were getting recruited to play in college, so I trained hard, seven days a week,” Mahaney said.

He also began coaching early on, leading young girls’ recreational teams while studying architecture at Kansas State. 

After college, Mahaney moved to Marin, and decided to volunteer for the Mill Valley Soccer Club. His talent in the field quickly became evident, and he became an official trainer for the club at age 23. 

What ultimately brought Mahaney to our school was his daughters being avid soccer players. Wanting to help the program and his children, Mahaney started coaching JV; five years later, Mahaney will be leading the program and coaching varsity. 

“Conrad [the previous coach] and I are good friends. We both coach from a similar place, and he always made me feel included in the program, which is something I am really excited to continue,” said Mahaney. 

Although Mahaney coached amazing teams that made it to the semi-finals and California State Cups, his proudest accomplishment is the Freshman Academy Program at Drake. The program offers a smooth transition for first-year students that want to play soccer but may not have as much experience playing at a competitive level. 

“It’s something that really rang true in my heart,” Mahaney said, “I remember how awkward that transition to high school, and I feel that the academy offers a great community for young women at this school.” 

With tryouts coming up on Nov. 4, Mahaney holds open field practices where the girls can bond and begin to practice together, creating a cohesive team. 

When reflecting on his outlook for the upcoming season, Mahaney says that he’s seen incredible potential from local games and open field, but it is impossible to know until tryouts.

 “It’s really hard to tell until everybody is out there, but I can’t wait,” said Mahaney.