Effective June 1, Ryan Mahoney will serve as the head coach for the HC cross country and track and field teams. Current head coach Kendrick Clay announced earlier this year he is resigning after 10 years.
Mahoney was the head track and field coach at Southwest High School in Lincoln before coming to HC.
As head coach at Southwest and assistant coach at Lincoln Southeast—a position he held from 1998-2002—he led seven cross country and track and field teams to state championships. He also coached 11 individual state champions in various events.
Jerry Schmutte, athletic director, approached Mahoney early in the search process to see if there was mutual interest.
“It was honestly something I had to think about,” Mahoney said. “I really enjoy coaching and teaching at Southwest, but it was too good an opportunity to pass up.”
One immediate challenge for Mahoney will be to fill his small roster. Currently, there are only 38 track athletes returning next year. Mahoney said that he’s evaluated the roster and is already hard at work recruiting.
“I’m already trying to recruit as much as I can outside of work and practice hours now,” Mahoney said. “We need to get our numbers up. Our numbers are [too] small right now to be able to compete at the conference level.”
Mahoney will bring his own coaching style to HC.
“I think to get the most out of people, you have to make it a place they want to come to every day,” Mahoney said. “They look forward to being at practice; they look forward to being with their teammates; and they’re willing to give that one hundred percent—not just for them, but for their teammates.”
Eight of the 17 qualifiers at indoor nationals are seniors, and four of the remaining nine are juniors.
Despite low numbers returning next year, Mahoney is still confident in HC.
“Hastings College, I think, has a lot of opportunities to really step it up and become a major player in the GPAC,” he said.