The Toronto Rock Lacrosse Club begin training camp this Saturday, November 28 at the Iroquois Lacrosse Arena in Hagersville, Ontario.
Controlling the whistle this year is head coach Troy Cordingley along with general manager Terry Sanderson, John Lovell and Matt Sawyer as his assistants.
After four rookie and free agent sessions that took place over the last three weeks, the Rock add 14 new faces into the mix and head into training camp with 35 men vying for 23 active roster positions.
“We’re excited about the returning Rock players,” said Sanderson. “From all the film we have watched and competing against them last season with Calgary, we know what these guys can do.
“I wouldn’t count out any of the new faces though, the rookies and free agents are eager. Some of these guys will push for starting positions; it will be great to see what they can bring to the whole mix.”
Rock defender Scott Campbell, who scored five goals, assisted on two others and picked up 93 loose balls last season, is looking forward to training camp but his excitement is mixed with nerves.
“A new coaching staff has been brought in to change the whole culture of the team. The last few years we have lacked focus and intensity going into games, but Troy and Terry are two of the most intense people I have ever met in my life and that mentality is contagious to be around.
“I expect they will run a fast paced, intense camp and will be looking for guys that lay it all on the line. I am preparing for the toughest most competitive camp I have been involved in. I know there will be a lot of new faces and no one’s job is safe.”
Cordingley and his bench will have a keen eye on everyone on the floor and have eight camp sessions before having to announce their final roster of 23 players and three practice members by December 23, 2009.
The team will hit the turf for the first time as a team on Saturday, January 9 in Boston when they open their 2010 National Lacrosse League season against the Blazers. The Toronto Rock kick off their home schedule of eight games on Friday, January 15 when then host the Boston Blazers at the Air Canada Centre.
Sanderson heads into the 2010 season realistic but hopeful.
“Every game out we’ll compete. There is a lot of parity in this league, and the East Division is extremely tough, but I would expect and hope fans will see a better product and a bunch of guys that will care about wearing this jersey again.”