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Swarm announce final 20-man roster

12/16/2013, 12:30pm CST
By Alec Schimke

The Swarm opens the 2014 NLL regular season in Rochester Dec. 28

SAINT PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Swarm today announced the team’s final 20-man roster for the 2014 season.

The Swarm will be celebrating their 10th season of professional box lacrosse in the NLL in 2014 and will kickoff the regular season on the road against the defending NLL Champion Rochester Knighthawks at 6:30 p.m. CT Saturday, Dec. 28. Minnesota will make its home debut at The Hive Sunday, Jan. 19 during a 2 p.m. matchup against the Philadelphia Wings at Xcel Energy Center. 2014 Swarm Season and Single-Game Tickets can be purchased by calling 1-888-667-9276 or visiting www.mnswarm.com.

Minnesota enters the 2014 season with a young, athletic and potent roster that is coming off back-to-back NLL Division Finals appearances. In 2014, the Swarm will feature 14 players from last year’s roster, and will get a big boost with the return of team captain T Andrew Suitor to the lineup. Suitor missed a majority of the 2013 season with an ACL injury. Defenseman Jeff Gilbert and forward Callum Crawford will serve as the Swarm’s assistant captains. For the second straight season, Minnesota has added four first-round picks to its roster, this year with the addition of F Logan Schuss (No. 1 overall), D Jason Noble (No. 2 overall), T Cameron Flint (No. 4 overall) and F Scott Jones (No. 7 overall).

“I feel that we have our most well-rounded roster compared to previous years, with the addition of our youth, and building around our core, with our key players all coming back in terrific shape,” Swarm associate general manager and head coach Joe Sullivan said. “All of our draft picks came to camp and had an immediate impact, and not only our first rounders, but our later round picks as well. Everyone has done exactly what we hoped they would do, and has made it really tough for us to move some players out of our organization.”

While Minnesota has reached new heights in reaching the Division Finals in back-to-back seasons for the first time in franchise history, the goal for the 2014 season has been made clear from the get-go: win a Champion’s Cup.

“It hasn’t sat well with anybody in our organization to go so far and come that close two years in a row,” Sullivan said. “The task at hand now is to get to the Champion’s Cup, and then let the chips fall where they may. I believe if we get to that game, our youth, speed, enthusiasm, and our confidence by the time that we’re in that position, we’ll give anyone a great game for that Cup.”

The Swarm made a last minute roster addition Sunday morning, agreeing to a two-year contract with veteran D Mike Hobbins. The Peterborough, Ontario native spent the past five seasons with the Toronto Rock, and won a Champion’s Cup as a member of the Rock in 2011.

“I’ve known Mike for a long time and I know his character and personality, and I know that he’s an automatic great fit to our organization, and that’s off the floor,” Sullivan said. “What he does on the floor, everybody can attest that he has great speed, he’s a smart defender, and he can finish around the net. For us to land a player like Mike Hobbins on basically the last day of training camp was just a great addition and we expect him to have an immediate impact playing alongside his former Rock teammate, Jeff Gilbert.”

2014 Minnesota Swarm 20-Man Roster (*Denotes Rookies):

Forwards (5): No. 98 Callum Crawford ‘A’, No. 81 Josh Gillam, No. 32 Shayne Jackson, No. 89 Scott Jones*, and No. 18 Logan Schuss*.

Transition (7): No. 33 David Earl, No. 12 Cameron Flint*, No. 9 Tyler Hass, No. 24 Jordan MacIntosh, No. 46 Kiel Matisz, No. 3 Brock Sorensen, and No. 20 Andrew Suitor ‘C’.

Defensemen (6): No. 10 Alex Crepinsek, No. 8 Greg Downing, No. 4 Jeff Gilbert ‘A’, No. 11 Mike Hobbins, No. 15 Jordan Houtby*, and No. 45 Jason Noble*.

Goaltenders (2): No. 30 Tyler Carlson and No. 31 Zach Higgins.

By The Numbers: Returning Players: 14 … New Faces: 6 … Rookies: 5

Minnesota will announce its practice roster at a later date.

Swarm fans looking to lock up 2014 Season Tickets can take advantage of a Buy 2, Get 2 at 25% offer. By purchasing two season tickets at full price, fans can add an additional two tickets for 25% off. Call 1-888-667-9276 for purchasing information.

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