SUDBURY, Ont. – Arguably no one works harder and puts in more time during any Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League season than the member club’s trainers and equipment managers.
One of those select few that provides this invaluable service is Timmins Rock head athletic trainer and equipment manager Lacey Rigg.
The Timmins product first joined the organization back in 2015 as a board member before becoming the Rock’s trainer prior to the start of the 2018-19 campaign.
Rigg’s day-to-day responsibilities include a multitude of tasks.
“I’m trainer and equipment manager, so pre-COVID I made sure all the laundry was done and all the practice gear/game day gear was ready,” she stated.
“Also, any equipment repairs, as well as any sewing that needed to be done was looked after such as name bars, fixing holes in gear, etc.”
Timmins head coach Corey Beer knows full well the value Rigg provides to the team.
With the never-ending tasks required, the Rock bench boss appreciates the efforts put forth by Rigg on a daily basis.
“She brings a great work ethic and has a great infectious personality, which goes hand-in-hand with our players and coaching staff,” Beer boasted when discussing this invaluable member of the organization.
“From dealing with the guys’ laundry and jerseys on practice days, to equipment adjustments and making sure our player’s gear is in top notch condition,” the Timmins skipper praised Rigg for her on-going commitment.
Earning her degree from Brock University in St. Catharines, Ont., in Community Recreation and Leisure Studies, Rigg not only logs long hours with the Rock, but also works full-time for the City of Timmins as the coordinator for Sports Tourism during the day.
She has formed a strong bond with players on the team, past and present.
“With the connection I have with the guys, they have become like 23 family members,” she stated.
“I have maintained many friendships with past players and am pleased to watch them succeed, either in school, the OHL or their careers.”
Beer recognizes her contributions have gone a long way in being part of the Rock’s on-ice success the past number of seasons.
“Lacey has now been with our organization for three years now and on game days, her making sure our jerseys look pristine and the layout in the dressing room gives a great feeling of pride to our players.”
The health and well-being of the Timmins roster is also a key to Riggs’ duties that Beer truly appreciates.
“The management of injuries is something she always keeps us, as a staff, up to speed on, making sure our line-up each night has the best ability to perform to its highest standards.”
As coach of the Rock, Beer is thankful for everything the entire training staff have to offer.
“In my time working with Lacey, along with the rest of her staff, in Chris Lefevbre, Mel Brousseau, and the late Peter Eno, it has been a great time and always professional.”
Being with a team that is so well supported by the Timmins faithful also makes her relish her time as a member of the club, especially the nights the hometown faithful fill McIntyre Arena.
“An arena packed has just amazing atmosphere. Some of the playoff games at home were great.”
The league itself appreciates the contributions provided by Rigg and all the other training and equipment staff across the NOJHL.
“Lacey has done great things with the Timmins Rock,” said commissioner Robert Mazzuca.
“We cannot thank her, and all the league trainers and equipment managers, for their significant efforts and contributions, each and every season,” added Mazzuca.
“They don’t always get the accolades and admiration they deserve, but we truly appreciate all that they do in making sure all the players in the NOJHL are safely looked after and allowing them to compete at the best of their abilities,” summarized the commissioner.
While the league patiently awaits a return to play, Rigg is pleased to be part of such a well-balanced bench personnel that performs mightily in their respective areas.
“The NOJHL is such a community of amazing trainers. We always have each other’s backs and I am honoured to be apart of such an incredible group of volunteers.”
Currently with a league-best 9-3-1 record, she also hopes Timmins gets back to game action real soon to try and help fulfill one her goals with the Rock.
“I’d love to help my team win a championship.”
Photo credit: Thomas Perry/Timmins Daily Press