With the regular season less than a week away, Temple took to Geasey Field on Friday for its annual Cherry and White scrimmage.
Players alternated between sides, participating in a full scrimmage, a seven on seven overtime drill and a shootout.
“They look sharp,” coach Amanda Janney said of the team following practice. “We feel good that they came in in good shape. Our returners are really doing a great job, and I feel like we have a lot of strengths returning for us.”
“Our defense is pretty set,” Janney added. “We lost some good players, but with our strong goalkeepers and our strong backs we feel good about that.”
Temple will open up its season in Lancaster at the Spooky Nook Sports complex, with matchups against Northeastern on Friday (8-13 overall, 3-3 in the Colonial Athletic Association in 2013) and the University of Massachusetts (19-5, 7-0 in the Atlantic 10 and ranked No. 11 in 2013) on Sunday.
Temple finished 14-6 with a 4-3 conference record in the Big East Conference last season, falling to Connecticut in the first round of the conference championship. The Owls are returning with most of last year’s roster intact, sans its 2014 graduates in midfielder/defenders Molly Doyle, Mandi Shearer and forward Lauren Hunt.
Temple will get another taste of exhibition play Saturday when it hosts Villanova in a scrimmage at 4 p.m.
Doyle joins as volunteer coach
Molly Doyle’s primary focus is getting into law school.
But while the recent graduate prepares to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) in the spring, she will also be spending time on Temple’s sidelines as a volunteer coach.
Doyle was a co-captain last season, serving as one of the team’s key defensive players. She finished the 2013 campaign with eight goals, three assists and 19 points.
“She’s got great knowledge and she’s a great coach,” Janney said. “That she had to do that, coaching as a captain and now as an assistant coach, it’s been a really easy transition for her.”
Youtz, Millen named to preseason team
Senior forward Amber Youtz and redshirt senior goalkeeper Lizzy Millen were unanimous selections to the 2014 Preseason All-Big East Team on Wednesday, after having runs last season that put them amongst the best in the country.
Although missing four games last year due to an arm injury, Youtz averaged a goal per game (fifth in the nation) and 2.44 points per game (second in the nation), totaling 16 goals, seven assists and 39 points in 2013. This is the second straight year the Dauphin, Pennsylvania native has been named to the preseason team.
Millen, meanwhile, recorded five shutouts last season and posted a 76.6 save percentage that ranked 19th in the country.
Temple is projected to finish third in the conference, according to this year’s preseason coaches’ poll, after a fourth-place finish last year.
Defending national champion UConn is projected to finish atop the conference standings, receiving five of six first place votes in the poll.
Nick Tricome can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @itssnick215.