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Published: Saturday, 7/21/2012 - Updated: 1 year ago

Walleye captain Rogers to return

BY MARK MONROE
BLADE SPORTS WRITER
Toledo's Kyle Rogers set career highs in goals (20) and points (44) last season. He will return for a third season. Toledo's Kyle Rogers set career highs in goals (20) and points (44) last season. He will return for a third season.
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Veteran forward Kyle Rogers vows that the Toledo Walleye will make the playoffs this season.

The Toledo Walleye's captain will return for the 2012-13 season. Rogers agreed to terms with the team on Friday.

Rogers, 27, ranked second on the team in scoring last season. He scored 20 goals and dished out 24 assists.

"Last season was a disappointment that we didn't make the playoffs, and I am going to do my best to make sure we get there this time around," Rogers said.

Walleye coach Nick Vitucci named Rogers captain just prior to the season opener last October. Vitucci called Rogers a tremendous leader and an important part of the team going forward.

Known for playing with an edge, Rogers has appeared in a total of 284 professional games. This will be Rogers' third full season in Toledo.

"I'm ready to get this season underway and play again in front of the great Walleye fans," Rogers said.

Rogers and rookie forward Joey Martin had a friendly rivalry as they exchanged the team lead in scoring throughout last season. Rogers was a bright spot in an otherwise lackluster season that saw Toledo miss the playoffs with a 28-38-6 record.

"I have really enjoyed playing for the coaching staff here in Toledo. I know the team will be ready to go in October," Rogers said.

At 6 feet, 3 inches and 220 pounds, Rogers earned the nickname "The Edge" for his aggressive play and emotional leadership. Rogers played in 143 games in the American Hockey League.

Before turning pro in 2008, Rogers played in college at Niagara University. Rogers, who was born in Philadelphia, now lives in Erie, Pa., during the offseason.

He was the club's second-oldest player last year.

Rogers appeared in every game last season with Toledo, setting career highs in goals and points with 44. Kyle also scored five game-winning goals, including two in overtime.

"Kyle is a dominant force on both sides of the puck," Vitucci said. "This past season we saw the offensive part of his game really blossom."

The season opener is Oct. 13 against Kalamazoo at the Huntington Center.

Contact Mark Monroe at: mmonroe@theblade.com, 419-724-6354 or on Twitter @MonroeBlade



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