Kelly Gallagher is in her seventh season as the head women's lacrosse coach at the University of Tampa. She was chosen as the program's first coach, being named to the position on Oct. 9, 2012.
Gallagher brings a total of 20 years of lacrosse experience, including coaching stints with Limestone College (2011-12) and NCAA Division I Detroit-Mercy (2008-11).
In her sixth season as head coach at the University of Tampa, Kelly Gallagher led her team to a season of several firsts. Her team won a program-best 14 games as it finished 14-4 on the 2019 season. She also led her team to the top 5 national rankings for the first time ever, climbing as high as No. 3 (5/3/19). With a 5-1 Sunshine State Conference record, she led her Spartans to capture their first-ever SSC tournament championship, taking down No. 3 Rollins and No. 5 Florida Southern along the way. She was honored as the 2019 SSC Coach of the Year, her second consecutive season receiving this honor. Additionally, for the first time in program history, two of her Spartans, Claire Swanson '20 and Carly Vaccaro '20 recieved IWLCA All-America honors, while Swanson was also named conference player of the year. The Spartans 2019 campaign came to an end when they were defeated in the NCAA tournament, the program's first appearance, by the No. 10 Queens Royals. The Spartans finished the season ranked No. 7 in the IWLCA Coaches Poll.
Under her advisory, in 2018, the Spartans finished the season ranked No. 19 with an overall record of 12-6. In the historical season, UT opened competition defeating the No. 11 ranked Rollins College Tars by a final score of 10-6. This marked the first time in program history that the Spartans beat a ranked opponent. The firsts continued as the season progressed and Tampa battled into the national rankings, climbing as high as No. 15 (3/19/18). When conference accolades were announced, Gallagher was named the 2018 Sunshine State Conference Coach of the Year, while one of her players, Bridget Sutter, snagged Sunshine State Conference Freshman of the Year. The Spartans ended their historic season advancing to the Sunshine State Conference Women's Lacrosse Tournament for the third time in program history after finishing third in regular-season play.
Her Spartans ranked among NCAA leaders in draw controls in each of her first two seasons, leading the nation in the category in the first year of existence.
She guided Tampa to a successful inaugural season in 2014, matching up against five nationally-ranked opponents. After guiding the program to its first victory in an 11-9 win over Newberry on March 4, Gallagher led her Spartans to four consecutive victories to conclude the month of March as the Spartans also won five of their final eight games of the 2014 campaign.
As the top assistant at Limestone, Gallagher helped the Saints to a 17-2 record in 2012. While advancing to the NCAA tournament, Limestone had three IWCLA All-Americans. The Saints posted the top win-loss percentage in NCAA Division II, and also had five players in the national top-five among statistical rankings.
Hired as the first assistant coach in Detroit women’s lacrosse history, which began play in 2009 as the first such program in the State of Michigan, Gallagher was directly responsible for recruiting nationwide as well as handling the scheduling of practices and games. She also handled training of the team’s goalkeepers and scouting of both UDM’s players and their opponents.
Among Detroit-Mercy’s accomplishments during her tenure was a runner-up finish in the National Lacrosse Conference in 2009 and a semifinalist appearance the following season. The Titans also had nine players named to the NLC All-Conference Team, six All-Tournament selections and the 2009 NLC Attack Player of the Year.
Prior to her time at UDM, Gallagher was an assistant coach at Muhlenberg College from 2006-08. Joining the coaching staff in September of 2006, she helped the team to a 9-7 overall record in 2007 before the Mules posted a solid 11-5 record the following season. While with the Division III institution she was responsible for the development of the goalkeepers, recruitment efforts, the planning of practice and development of offensive sets.
Muhlenberg posted a record of 20-12 over those two years and qualified for the Centennial Conference Tournament in 2008 for the first time in program history. That season, the Mules also posted a team-record 11 wins and had a non-conference wins streak of 22 games through that campaign. They also placed five players on the All-Centennial Conference Team and had a North-South All-Star selection.
In addition to her college coaching experience, Gallagher also gained valuable international experience as she served as an assistant coach with the Haundenosaunee Under-19 World Team at the 2011World Cup in Hanover, Germany. In that role, she helped to develop and prepare the goalkeepers, plan team camps and practices and develop offensive and defensive strategies.
As a player, Gallagher competed for Washington College in Chestertown, Md. from 2003-06. While there, she helped lead the Shorewomen to a runner-up finish in the 2003 ECAC Regional Lacrosse Championship. She started at attack for two seasons and was voted team captain as a senior by her teammates.
A 2006 graduate of Washington College, Gallagher holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history and a minor in political science.