Alumna Courtney Howe Named Head Women’s Soccer Coach

Westminster College announced on July 30 that alumna Courtney Howe, ’13, was named head women’s soccer coach for the 2021-2022 Academic Year.

Howe comes to Westminster from William Woods University, where she led the Owls in two consecutive winning seasons as assistant women’s soccer coach. She replaces Westminster’s Wendy Sanchez, who stepped down earlier in July.

“I am very excited to welcome Courtney back to campus as our next head coach of our very successful women’s soccer program,” said Director of Athletics Matt Mitchell in a recent news release. “Her recruiting experience, familiarity with the campus, and our women’s program culture were huge factors in choosing her for this position. Her enthusiasm for Westminster College will be contagious for the young women she will lead.”

At Westminster, Howe self-designed her Education and Sports Management major. As a Blue Jays soccer player, she was a goal keeper, four-year starter, two-time captain, and named team MVP her senior year. Howe earned a master’s degree in Education from WWU in May 2021.

Westminster caught up with Howe on Aug. 4 during her first official week on staff. Read below to find out what she says about returning to her alma mater, what her goals are for the upcoming soccer season, and what she thinks about Jack Benke, Executive Director of Plant Operations and Security.

Where are you from originally, and where are you living now?

Originally, I am from St. Louis, MO. I attended Ladue Horton Watkins High School. Currently, I am living in Columbia, MO.

How do you feel about returning to your alma mater to coach women’s soccer?

So many emotions. Some could say it’s a dream come true.

What are your goals for the upcoming soccer season?

First things first, we want to win! Continuing to have winning seasons is what any program wants. To do this, we have to set a tone and let our opponents know we aren’t letting down, and we have to continue to grow and build as a team.

What is your favorite Westminster memory? 

There are many, but if I had to choose, it would be my second-to-last game as a senior. I begged Coach Dyson to let me play on the field instead of as keeper. I finally went in and scored within a minute of being on the field. Her face was priceless.

What is your favorite spot on campus? 

Aside from the original grass field where I spent a lot of my time, I love the old stairs behind the Historic Gym and that bridge over Stinson Creek that leads to the fields. In the fall, it is really beautiful.

Who is your favorite Westminster faculty or staff member?

I have several, so this is a tough question. But Jack Benke comes in at Number 1.

What is the last book you read? 

The last book I read was Megan Rapinoe’s One Life.

Do you have a favorite quote?

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” – Mae West

What do you do in your free time? 

In my free time, I love to be outdoors kayaking, hiking, exploring … l love it all. I also enjoy live music and time with family and friends.

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Sarah Rummel Backer

Sarah Rummel Backer is the Director of Media Relations and Senior Writer at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. A proud Westminster graduate, Sarah has more than 20 years of experience in marketing and strategic communications in the areas of higher education, medicine, agriculture, and the private business sector.