BRADFORD, Pa. -- The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford women's soccer program has named Melissa Lincoln its head coach.
Lincoln comes to Pitt-Bradford from Houghton College, where she was a standout player and assistant coach for longtime head coach David Lewis.
"Melissa was a very good player at Houghton College," said Bret Butler, director of intercollegiate athletics. "She was also fortunate enough to coach with him as an assistant and earned very high praise from her former boss for her abilities as a coach. She brings a strong passion and knowledge with her, not only for the game but also for this region. I am very excited that Melissa will be on our sidelines, and I expect her to be very successful at Pitt-Bradford and within the AMCC."
Lincoln graduated from Houghton College with a bachelor's degree in physical education in 2013. A four-year varsity player at Houghton, she became a regular starter her junior year and was voted team captain her senior year.
She shared great success on the pitch, earning two National Christian College Athletics Association (NCCAA) Division I regional championships, securing spots in the NCCAA Division I National Tournament. She also helped her team earn an NAIA American Mideast Conference Tournament championship while making a pair of appearances in the NAIA National Tournament Sweet Sixteen.
After graduation, she spent two years as the girls' soccer varsity head coach at Avoca Central School in Avoca, N.Y., where she saw seven total players selected as league all-stars and four named to the Exceptional Senior Team.
In 2016, she returned to her alma mater to serve as an assistant coach. Her duties included developing strategies for games and practices with Lewis, handling game film and, at times, running practice. Her main focus was on the relational aspect of coaching, building and maintaining strong connections with her players.
Lincoln's coaching experience also includes summers of assisting with the Houghton Soccer Camp and directing the Chicago Eagles Soccer Camp.
"I am beyond grateful for the opportunity to take on the role as the head women's soccer coach here at Pitt-Bradford," Lincoln said. "I'm excited to work with this team and continue to grow and develop this program. I'm so thankful for everyone who took the time to help make this possible. I can't wait to meet the team and get to work. I'm looking forward to this journey and to a great season ahead."
Lincoln inherits an experienced team made up of eight seniors and nine juniors, along with three returning sophomores. Four freshmen round out the 2017 roster.
Pitt-Bradford women's soccer will begin its 2017 season on Saturday, Aug. 26, as Fredonia comes to the Kessel Complex for an 11 a.m. kickoff.