Toronto – The Toronto Rock have released five players, moved a pair of players to the holdout list and activated one player from the injured reserve to bring them to 23 players on the active roster as today’s noon roster deadline approaches.
Mark Farthing, Eric Bissell, John Quarrie, Scott Johnston and Shawn Udema have all been released by the club and are now free agents. Aaron Pascas and Nick Inch have each been moved to the team’s holdout list. Ryan Sharp has been moved from Injured Reserve to the active roster and Drew Petkoff will remain on Injured Reserve.
This means there are two first-year players that have landed on the active roster. 2011 NLL Entry Draft selections Jesse Gamble and Pete Rennie have earned those two roster spots out of camp.
“We thought those two had the best camp of the younger players,” said Rock GM Terry Sanderson. “Gamble was banged up through the middle of training camp, but he certainly made up for it with his play on Sunday against Minnesota. Rennie is going to be a pretty good defensive player in this league, especially once he learns our system and adjusts to the speed of the pro game. He’s going to be a real asset”
Currently, the Rock do not have any of their three available practice roster spots occupied. With a number of releases to come from teams around the league, those roster spots could be filled.
“When Petkoff comes back, we’ll have to move someone to the practice roster,” explained Sanderson. “We’re speaking with a couple of veteran guys that could also push someone off the active roster prior to our home opener.”
The only two newcomers on offence are forwards Josh Sanderson and Dan Carey. They will join returnees Colin Doyle, Blaine Manning, Garrett Billings, Stephan Leblanc, Kasey Beirnes and Rob Hellyer going out the front door.
On the back end in addition to rookies Gamble and Rennie, off-season acquisitions Bill Greer and Bruce Codd are a pair of veteran fresh faces on the Rock defence. Back from Toronto’s championship defence of a year ago are Sandy Chapman, Patrick Merrill, Mike Hobbins, Rob Marshall, Phil Sanderson, Cam Woods, Ryan Sharp, Glen Bryan, Stephen Hoar and Drew Petkoff.
With Bob Watson now retired and already a hall-of-fame member, the goaltending duties have been turned over to veteran Matt Roik, who was acquired from Washington in the summer, and the returning Pat Campbell.
The Rock will be off for the Christmas break and will resume preparations for the 2012 season on Friday, December 30th with a rare practice at Air Canada Centre. On Sunday, January 8th the Rock will face the Calgary Roughnecks to open the 2012 regular season at Air Canada Centre. The game will be broadcast live on TSN at 6pm ET.
For the full team roster, please click here.