Men’s Soccer Team Rallies Behind New Keeper Mahr

Mens Soccer Team Rallies Behind New Keeper Mahr

Josh Mahr has impressed many with his play so far this season for Le Moyne. The redshirt freshman goalkeeper has recorded eight wins in 10 games, including three shutouts. With performances like that, it is hard to believe Mahr did not play goalie in high school.
These days, Mahr’s job is to prevent the ball from hitting the back of the net. At Fayetteville-Manlius High School, however, his job was to put it there.
Playing forward, Mahr recorded 17 goals and five assists in 12 games during his senior year. He led F-M in goals and was named to the 2016 All-New York 2nd Team.
Despite his success as a forward, Mahr really wanted to be a goalkeeper.
When he was not scoring goals for his high school team, he was saving them for his club team, Empire United. There, he played goalkeeper from 9th through 11th grade. Empire United’s coach was Tom Bonus, who also happens to be the coach at Le Moyne. Bonus got to see Mahr’s skills in the net early and first-hand.
“He’s got good size and athletic ability, which is good for any keeper to have,” said Bonus. “Along with that, he is very good technically.”
When Mahr first arrived at Le Moyne last year, he had no chance of getting any playing time. Senior Ben Beaury was the undisputed starter. Beaury started every single game in his four years at Le Moyne and is now playing professionally for the Charlotte Independence in the United Soccer League.
Mahr decided to redshirt, taking a year off to sharpen his goalkeeping skills. Beyond developing his game, Mahr focused on becoming bigger and stronger.
“We set up schedules with the strength and conditioning coaches,” said Mahr. “A lot of the practices when we were in season, I knew I wasn’t going to play the next day, so I was able to come down and get an extra lift in when others couldn’t. I took advantage of that.”
With Beaury gone, Bonus held a healthy competition in the preseason. In the end, Mahr was named starter over junior Jerry Lewandowski.
“I wasn’t surprised, but at the same time, we didn’t know,” Mahr said, “It was up for grabs.”

The Dolphins are currently 9-2 and third in the Northeast-10 Conference, following a recent win against Stonehill College. Le Moyne is now on a three-game win streak and is ranked fourth in the United Soccer Coaches’ East Regional poll.
Mahr earned his eighth win of the season in the game against Stonehill and is now fifth in the conference in goals against. He is also tied for sixth in goals against average at 1.22. Bailey Bassett of Southern Connecticut State is the conference’s stingiest keeper, allowing only .81 goals per game.
Reflecting back on his goalkeeper’s progress, Bonus pointed to his work last season. “One thing he did a good job in,” Bonus said on Mahr, “I tell a lot of freshmen this when we redshirt them: If you take advantage of that redshirt year, that opportunity to make yourself a better player, it’s going to help you a lot down the road and help the team.”