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Checkers Slip Past Stingrays 4-3

By: Mike Kelly

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. – Rick Kozak scored two goals including the game-winner in the third period to give the Charlotte Checkers a 4-3 win over the South Carolina Stingrays before 4,620 fans at the North Charleston Coliseum.

“We played a good game tonight but it just didn’t fall in our favor,” South Carolina coach Jason Fitzsimmons said. “Maybe some changes are needed, so guys don’t get complacent. We have two more divisional games this weekend. We have to start winning again.”

Charlotte (7-3-0, 14 points) opened the score at 3:44. Zdenek Bahensky netted his second of the season beating Davis Parley. Jakub Petruzaluk and Kirk DeWaele garnered assists.

South Carolina (7-5-1, 15 points) tied the score at 1-1, as Chris Chaput scored his team-leading eighth goal of the season getting the puck by Chris Holt. Helpers went to Scott Romfo and T.J. McElroy, who registered his first professional point.

The Checkers number one ranked power play converted at 13:46 of the first. Blake Bellefeuille re-directed a Mark Lee point shot to make it 2-1 for Charlotte.

In the second, Kozak buried his second of the campaign to give the Checkers a 3-1 advantage.

Stingrays captain Cail MacLean got the South Carolina within one, as he tipped home a Jamie Fraser shot at 12:43 of the middle stanza. Peter Szabo also picked up an assist.

MacLean tied the score at 3-3 by potting a power play goal at 14:02 of the third from Chaput and Schwabe.

But 21 seconds later, Kozak registered the eventual game-winning goal on an innocent looking play as he came from behind the South Carolina net.

South Carolina converted on 1-of-7 power play chances, while Charlotte also went 1-for-7. Stingrays outshot the Checkers 31-29.

The Stingrays wrap-up their four-game homestand with a 7:05 p.m. game on Saturday against the Columbia Inferno at the North Charleston Coliseum. It’s Dunkin’ Donuts Million Dollar Chuck-a-Puck! The fan whose puck lands closest to the bulls-eye during the Dunkin’ Donuts Chuck-a-Puck will get the chance to go down to the ice after the game to shoot a puck for a million bucks! You must be 18 years of age or older to be eligible. In addition, there is also BB&T Dash For Cash.

Join Mike Kelly, “Voice of the Stingrays” for live play-by-play action on Real 1340 and online at www.stingrayshockey.com beginning at 6:50 p.m. with the Benito’s Pregame Show. Watch the game live on the web telecast for $6 each at www.stingrayshockey.com, courtesy of B2 Networks.

Don’t miss the fast-paced, action-packed, family affordable fun! Full season and partial season ticket packages are available by calling (843) 744-2248.

Individual tickets can be purchased at the North Charleston Coliseum box office, by calling Ticketmaster at (843) 554-6060 and online at www.ticketmaster.com.

Discounted groups tickets, birthday packages, Kids Club information and fundraiser opportunities are available by calling (843) 744-2248 or by visiting online at www.stingrayshockey.com. Stingrays Hockey – A Whole Lot Cooler!



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