Four on the floor

DARREN FRIESEN -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:00 AM ET

On paper, the retooled Calgary Roughnecks are an inexperienced team.

But on the floor, it's a whole different story.

The National Lacrosse League club, which begins its season Jan. 12, unveiled its 23-man regular-season roster yesterday.

Ten new faces will don the Red and Black this season and eight of those players have dressed for a combined 30 games in the NLL.

However, general manager Kurt Silcott said to the untrained eye it may appear the Riggers have a lack of proven players but for the those in the organization, there's plenty of experience.

"I know these players very well and I've seen them play in the summer leagues and I know what they can do and that doesn't concern me in the least," said Silcott, who spearheaded the off-season lineup changes.

"We kept all of our superstars. The top four players on this team are still here.

"So, I don't call this rebuilding, what we've done is kept the core and put a new group around them."

That core which Silcott speaks so highly of will be captain Tracey Kelusky, Kaleb Toth, Taylor Wray and Lewis Ratcliff.

The fab four is going to be expected to provide the leadership, among other things, to a different Roughnecks lineup than a season ago and vastly different group that captured the 2004 title.

There's no worry because Silcott is confident the new guys will fit in nicely with the veterans.

"If I was relying on those guys to be my number one and number two scorers I would be concerned, but we're not asking these guys to go out and get three goals a game," Silcott said.

"We're asking them to put in one here and one there."

Among some of the new faces, Silcott likes the additions the club made on offence and transition.

"Nolan Heavenor is a guy that may have only played (five) games in this league but he's a really great player and he will do some really great things out there," he said.

"Jamie Rooney's another guy.

"He hasn't played a game in this league yet but he was the MVP of the senior-B circuit and that league has guys like Kyle Goundrey playing there."

In order to get down to the 23-man roster, the Roughnecks released Derek Tom and goalie Alec Coutts but then added them to their practice roster.


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