Old teammates use renewed familiarity

Katie Foran and Amber Youtz have spent years together.

Amber Youtz and Katie Foran don’t need to do much talking on the field.

The two Dauphin, Pennsylvania natives just know where the other is going to be.

“We come from the same high school,” Youtz said. “We really just played a lot. We know each other’s style. Most players need to talk to each other on the field. I just know where she is going with the ball, and she knows where I’m going.”

“We just automatically have that chemistry,” Youtz added. “And it’s great to have that.”

It’s hard not to, considering they grew up a short walk apart.

“[Foran] lives five minutes from my house,” Youtz said. “We’ve been very close, family and everything, and I think it just helps to be on the field together now.”

In Delaware’s circle early in the first half of Temple’s 5-1 rout of the Blue Hens on Friday, Youtz intercepted an attempted Delaware clearance. She closed in on goal with Foran alongside her and dished it off to the sophomore, who promptly deposited the ball in the back of the cage.

About 3 1/2 minutes later, the two of them connected on an almost identical play, the roles reversed this time.

The senior and sophomore forwards, respectively, tallied back-to-back goals in the victory.

Youtz has tallied four goals and an assist for nine points through Temple’s first six games.

Foran came up with her first goal of the season on Friday, an added two assists to the one she had recorded in a 6-1 win against Rutgers on Sept. 5. Both have started in all five of the Owls’ games up to this point.

Coach Amanda Janney said she was looking for Foran to take a step forward heading into the 2014 campaign. Although the sophomore struggled to get into the goal column through the team’s first four games, she has still managed to progress.

“This was a huge game for [Foran],” Janney said after Friday’s game. “She has been playing great for us, but has had trouble finding goals. To get two assists and a goal today was outstanding for her.”

“We were just talking about that on the sidelines, about how it felt great to have two back-to-back goals, give-and-go’s,” Foran added. “We just wanted to get back to how it was last year, and that [first goal] was the one to really set it off.”

Foran registered five goals and five assists for 15 points in 2013, starting in 10 of Temple’s 20 games as a freshman. Three of those goals came while Foran helped to fill in for an injured Youtz at the time, who missed four games during the season with an injured forearm.

Despite the injury, Youtz came up with 16 goals and seven assists for 39 points in 2013, leading the team in goals scored and finishing second in all of Division I in goals per game with an average of 2.44.

Foran said she was eyeing to take on a larger role in her second year before the season began, and she has come far from the quiet, reserved person she was as a freshman 12 months ago, Youtz said.

“Miles,” Youtz said of Foran’s progression. “When she first came in she played great from the beginning, don’t get me wrong. But you can just see improvement every single game, and the confidence every single game. That is what we need from the younger players on our team.”

Youtz, meanwhile, is moving up in the record books during her final season. With 46 goals career goals to this point, Youtz is tied for fifth on the program’s all-time scoring record. She is also fifth in points with 113 to her name, needing four more to move into fourth.

∗Nick Tricome can be reached at nick.tricome@temple.edu and on twitter @itssnick215

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