Complete list of Northwestern's Big Ten Medal of Honor Winners
Courtney Koester left her mark on the Northwestern women's lacrosse program, serving as the defensive team captain on the 2005 undefeated national championship team. Despite never playing lacrosse prior to being recruited by Kelly Amonte Hiller in 2001, Koester was a two-time IWLCA (Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association) and three-time Inside Lacrosse All-American, earning first team honors in 2004 from Inside Lacrosse and was named a first team by both outlets in 2005. Koester also was named the national Defender of the Year in 2005 by both the IWLCA and Inside Lacrosse and was a three-time All-American Lacrosse Conference first team selection.
Koester, a Richmond, Ind. native, made her mark on the Northwestern record books where she currently ranks third all-time in program history in draw controls (201) and caused turnovers (80) and sixth in ground balls (146). Anchoring the Wildcat backfield, Koester and the Northwestern defensive unit allowed just 124 goals in 21 games, as the 5.90 goals against average remains the lowest in program history. She was named to the 2005 NCAA All-Tournament Team as the Wildcats captured the first of their five-straight national championships.
Koester also excelled in the classroom, being named the CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year in the women's at-large division in 2005 after being named to the All-District V teams in 2004 (third team) and 2005 (first team). Koester was also a four-time Academic All-Big Ten selection (2002-05), earning her degree in computer engineering. She also played on the women's basketball for one season (2000-01) prior to joining the lacrosse team.