UMass Lowell River Hawks

The UMass Lowell River Hawks are the NCAA Division I intercollegiate athletics teams representing the University of Massachusetts Lowell in Lowell, Massachusetts, United States. Members of the America East Conference[2] for all sports (except the men's ice hockey team, which competes in Hockey East). UMass Lowell sponsors teams in eight men's and nine women's NCAA sanctioned sports.[3] Prior to transitioning to Division I (2013–Present), the River Hawks competed in the Northeast-10 Conference in Division II.

UMass Lowell River Hawks
UniversityUniversity of Massachusetts Lowell
ConferenceAmerica East Conference
Hockey East
NCAADivision I
Athletic directorPeter Casey
LocationLowell, Massachusetts
Varsity teams16
Basketball arenaTsongas Center at UMass Lowell/Costello Athletic Center
Baseball stadiumEdward A. LeLacheur Park
Soccer stadiumCushing Field Complex
MascotRowdy the River Hawk
NicknameRiver Hawks
Fight song"River Hawk Pride"
ColorsBlue, White, and Red[1]


Men's sports Women's sports
BasketballCross country
Cross countryField hockey
Ice hockeyLacrosse
Track and fieldTrack and field
† – Track and field includes both indoor and outdoor.

The University of Massachusetts Lowell participates in 16 sports at the Division 1 Level. On July 1, 2013, 14 of UMass Lowell's Division II teams moved up to Division I, joining the America East Conference. The River Hawks formerly competed in the Northeast-10 Conference at the Division II level. Past champions include the 1988 men's basketball team, the 1991 men's cross country team, the ice hockey team (three times) and the field hockey team twice (2005, 2010). The 2010 field hockey team finished its season with a perfect 24-0 record. The university added men's and women's lacrosse for the 2014-2015 academic year.[4]

The university's men's hockey team plays in the Hockey East Association and plays its home games at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell. In 2013, the men's hockey team won the Hockey East regular-season and tournament championships and advanced to the NCAA Division I Championship "Frozen Four," all for the first time in the university's history.[5] The men's hockey team repeated as Hockey East champions in 2014 while advancing to the NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Championship for the third straight year and sixth time overall. Goalie Connor Hellebuyck is the only Hockey East player to receive the league tournament's Most Valuable Player Award in two consecutive years, earning the honor in 2013 and 2014.[5]

The nickname "River Hawks" came about during the school's transition from the University of Lowell to UMass Lowell and was inspired by the campus's location along the Merrimack River. The University of Lowell's nickname was the Chiefs, which was abandoned in favor of the current name. A campus-wide poll was conducted for student input and final candidates included the Ospreys and the Raging Rapids, according to the Connector student newspaper.

Discontinued sports


UMass lowell started playing division III collegiate football in 1980, and eventually making the move to division II as a member of the New England Football Conference in 1987. Under coach Dennis Scannell UMass Lowell enjoyed a 35-4 run from 1988-91, making the 1991 NCAA Division III Football Championship playoffs losing to Union in the first round. The team struggled at the division II level against better competition. Due to budget cuts and lack of competitiveness on the field, the administration cut the sport in 2003.[6]


Sport Facility Capacity
Baseball Edward A. LeLacheur Park 4,797
Basketball Costello Athletic Center
Tsongas Center
Field hockey Cushing Field Complex
Ice hockey Tsongas Center 6,496
Lacrosse Cushing Field Complex
Soccer Cushing Field Complex
Softball River View Field
Track & field Cushing Field Complex
Volleyball Costello Athletic Center 2,000

Notable athletes

Athletic directors

  • Dana Skinner (1987-2018)[7]
  • Peter Casey (2018-present)[8]

National championships

The University of Massachusetts Lowell has won 7 NCAA Championships in school history, including:[9]

  • 1979 - Men's Ice Hockey (Division II)
  • 1981 - Men's Ice Hockey (Division II)
  • 1982 - Men's Ice Hockey (Division II)
  • 1988 - Men's Basketball (Division II)
  • 1991 - Men's Cross Country (Division II)
  • 2005 - Women's Field Hockey (Division II)
  • 2010 - Women's Field Hockey (Division II)


  1. UMass Lowell Athletics Branding Guide (PDF). June 8, 2016. Retrieved April 5, 2017.
  2. "America East Conference". America East Conference. Retrieved August 22, 2017.
  3. "UMass Lowell Athletics". Retrieved 2013-07-27.
  4. Whitmer, Michael (February 13, 2013). "UMass-Lowell joining America East". The Boston Globe. Retrieved February 21, 2013.
  5. "2015 Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament". NCAA. Retrieved 2015-09-23.
  6. "UMass Lowell's gridiron memories". Retrieved October 14, 2018.
  7. "UMass Lowell AD Skinner will retire". Retrieved October 14, 2018.
  8. "Casey the new boss of UMass Lowell athletics". Retrieved October 14, 2018.
  9. "University Quick Facts". UMass Lowell.
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