LOWELL, Mass. -- Carissa Medeiros was named the head coach at UMass-Lowell.

Medeiros, who spent the last six years as head coach at Bentley, comes to Lowell help begin the program and ease into its first year in Division I and the America East Conference.

The program is slated to begin competition in the spring of 2015.

“When I got to campus and Peter [Casey, Deputy Athletic Director] and Dana presented their plan on the growth of athletics and the facilities, I was sold,” Medeiros said. “I also know that Chancellor (Marty) Meehan has been a driving force behind the University’s impressive progress. There are so many things that got me really excited and I thought this was the perfect time to get on board with UMass-Lowell.”

Medeiros will begin her post on Aug. 1 and will begin recruiting immediately.

“This is an opportunity to build something from scratch,” she added. “When this opportunity came along, I thought this was perfect for me. I’m at the point of my career where I’ve trained very well for this opportunity.”

Prior to taking the reins at Bentley, Medeiros was an assistant coach at her alma mater, Stonehill, where she helped the Skyhawks to the 2005 NCAA championship. She also enjoyed a stellar four-year career which saw capture the 2003 NCAA title.

“Following an extensive search process, we felt Carissa was the person best suited to build the program at UMass-Lowell," said Skinner. "We believe her background as an outstanding student and athlete, her experience as a head coach, and her passion for the sport will enable us to move up quickly in the lacrosse world.”

In six seasons at Bentley, Medeiros compiled an overall record of 60-47 and a 46-21 clip in the Northeast-10 Conference while coaching 10 NE-10 all-conference players and four all-rookie team standouts.

Her teams have also excelled in the classroom, having earned Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) All-Academic honors in 2011 and 2012. More impressive, Bentley’s 2012 team was named an IWLCA Merit Squad for having one of the top three team grade point averages in Division II.

Previously, Medeiros spent three seasons (2005-07) as an assistant coach at Stonehill and helped the Skyhawks to NE-10 titles all three years, in addition to the 2005 NCAA championship.

“I think the big thing is getting quality student-athletes from the get-go,” Medeiros said. “I want to be able to start with a good core group of kids. There is going to be a bit of a learning curve. What is also very important to me is marketing UMass Lowell as a Division I program and getting our name out there.”

An All-American goalie as a senior at Stonehill, Medeiros was a walk-on who sat out her freshman year to concentrate on academics, but stepped into the starting lineup as a sophomore. She backstopped Stonehill to a three-year record of 45-15 which included the 2003 NCAA Championship as well as NE-10 Championships in all three years. She earned Tournament Most Valuable Player honors in 2003.

Additionally, Medeiros was named the IWLCA Goalie of the Year after ranking second in goals against average (6.17) and seventh in save percentage (.586) among Division II goalies. As a junior, she captured Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Goalie of the Year honors.