Rush hoping to find some scoring pop from Hillier

SCOTT ZERR -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 11:59 AM ET

Darren Hillier was one of the few players who arrived at the Edmonton Rush's open tryout with a lock on earning a spot in the main camp come November.

A season's worth of NLL experience under his belt was one plus for Hillier, who spent the inaugural campaign of 2002 with the Calgary Roughnecks.

And while he amassed a mere seven assists in eight games with the 'Necks, Hillier does possess some aptitude on offence, an aspect the defence-rich Rush are looking for out of the rag-tag bunch of hopefuls showing their wares this weekend.

"I'm mad at myself that I took a few years off because I'm starting to feel it," smiled the 25-year-old Hillier after yesterday's second intrasquad game.

"I've been watching a lot of the 21-year-olds and feeling like I can still run like that. But with having a team in Edmonton, I'd really love to play here and I'm doing everything I can to try and get on this team."

If Hillier can find a semblance of the scoring touch he honed with the Sherwood Park Titans and Edmonton Miners programs, he may wind up sporting the silver and black of the Rush.

Rush head coach and GM Paul Day came away pleasantly surprised by the calibre of players at the tryout, which comes almost two months after their summer season had concluded.

Of the 10 that are selected to attend the main camp, three have a shot at the playing roster with the rest looking for scraps on the practice squad.

"We're pretty strong on D, so we're looking for scoring on the right and left side, good athletes and some toughness," added Day.

QUICK STICKS: The Rush have sold over 2,000 season tickets in Rexall Place's lower bowl and have now opened sales for the upper deck. Prices there range from $80 to $240 for a pass for all eight games. The club will likely name some sponsorships this week.


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