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News

Rock Sign UFA Veteran Forward Stephen Keogh

ROCK SIGN UFA VETERAN FORWARD STEPHEN KEOGH

Gifted And Gritty Goal Scorer Coming Home To Rock City

Oakville, ON – Toronto Rock Owner, President, and GM Jamie Dawick announced today that the club has signed unrestricted free agent forward Stephen Keogh to a one-year agreement for the 2022-23 season.

The signing is pending league approval.

“We think he brings a lot to the table,” said Dawick of his most recent free agent signing.  “He’s a great veteran leader and presence.  He’s a very versatile player up front and will be a nice fit for our group.  After all these years watching him score and do the little things against us, it will be nice to see him do those things for us.”

The 35-year-old Toronto, ON native is a 10-year veteran of the NLL and has won three NLL championships (2012-14), all with the Rochester Knighthawks.  He was a key contributor to those Knighthawks title teams after being selected with the second overall pick in the 2011 NLL Draft.  Aside from his seven seasons with the original Knighthawks franchise, Keogh played parts of three seasons in Colorado and spent the last two campaigns with Halifax.

“I think the Rock was the right fit for me for a bunch of different reasons. Being able to play close to home and in front of family was a big part of it, but also because of my new career,” explained Keogh who was recently hired by the Hamilton Fire Department.  “I am very familiar with the coaching staff and the moves that the organization made this off-season shows that they are ready to make a serious run at an NLL championship.  Being a kid from Toronto and watching the Toronto Rock growing up, it’s always been a dream of mine to play for this team and I don’t think I could’ve passed up the opportunity to play for this organization and have another chance to win a Cup.”

That familiarity with the coaching staff comes from a relationship that was formed all the way back in 2008 when Keogh was traded from his hometown Toronto Beaches Jr. A club to the Orangeville Northmen in his final year of junior lacrosse eligibility.  That season, the Northmen went on to win the first of back-to-back Minto Cup Canadian Jr. A Championships under the tutelage of current Rock Head Coach Matt Sawyer.  Keogh was also named the MVP of that Minto Cup championship run.

“I’ve been a part of some heated rivalries with the Rock over the years, and I’ve always respected what they bring to the floor,” said Keogh.  “They work hard, are well coached and always a top team. I look forward to putting on a Rock jersey and doing whatever it takes to help this team win. I’m excited to join such a dynamic offence and will do whatever the coaches need me to do to help the team succeed and bring a championship home.”

There’s certainly a theme developing here.  Keogh is a winner.  Not only a Minto Cup and NLL Champion, but he also played a large role in Syracuse’s 2008 and 2009 NCAA championship wins.  The list doesn’t end there, he was a member of the Six Nations Chiefs Mann Cup Canadian Sr. A championship teams in 2013, 2014 and 2016.

The signing of Keogh is likely the last move in reshaping the Rock offence that was so very close to reaching the NLL finals last season.  Gone are Rob Hellyer, Reid Reinholdt and Justin Scott.  In are Keogh, Corey Small and the expected shift of Rock captain Challen Rogers from defence to offence.  It’s a new look group that Dawick has assembled.

“It’s always about putting the puzzle together and we have made some significant changes up front, some because of choice, some because of circumstances,” said Dawick.   “We’re trying to find the perfect puzzle pieces to complete that championship puzzle.  We have done that through trades and free agency, and this is the final piece of the puzzle in an attempt to get this franchise back in the winner’s circle.”

Toronto Rock training camp will begin on Saturday, November 5th at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre in Oakville, ON.  Three exhibition games will be played at the TRAC in November and the schedule will be announced in the coming weeks.

2022-23 Toronto Rock Season Memberships are on sale now!  For more information on tickets, please visit torontorock.com, call the Rock Ticket Office at 416-596-3075 or email us at [email protected].

Toronto Rock