Estero, FL – The South Carolina Stingrays (38-17-6-6) bounced the Florida Everblades (34-22-4-5) 5-3 in front of 7,344 at Germain Arena Friday night. Stingrays forward Keith Johnson potted two goals and goaltender Shane Connelly stopped 27 of 30 Everblades shots in the win.
The Everblades kicked off the scoring just 17 seconds into the first period as forward Ross Carlson tipped in a bouncing puck over the left shoulder of Connelly for his 21 goal of the season. Defensemen Benn Olson and Phil Paquet earned the assists.
Johnson tied the game at 10:08 of the second period with his 26 goal of the season beating Everblades goaltender Chris Beckford-Tseu low glove-side. Forward Trent Campbell and defenseman Grant Farrell registered assists. The Stingrays grabbed a two-goal lead on the power play as Farrell found the twine at 11:11 from rookie Rob Ricci. Florida made it 2-2 on a tally by forward Shea Guthrie at 16:17 from forward Earnie Hartlieb and defenseman A.J. Thelen.
Stingrays newcomer Chris Capraro reclaimed the lead at 1:17 of the third period beating Beckford-Tseu with a wrist shot from between the circles for his first goal as a Stingray and seventh tally of the season. Moments later Johnson netted his second of the night at 2:47 to make it a 4-2 Stingrays lead from forward Gregg Johnson and defenseman Johann Kroll. The Everblades pulled within one on the power play at 10:02 off a drive from forward Milan Gajic. Guthrie and Hartlieb received assists. Stingrays rookie Jake Hauswirth iced the game with a short-handed marker at 11:42 from winger Trevor Bruess. Beckford-Tseu suffered the loss kicking away 38 of 43 Stingrays chances. The Stingrays finished the night 1-for-4 on the power play while the Everblades ended the night 1-for-5.
The Stingrays and Everblades square off one final time Saturday, March 20 at 7:30 p.m. at Germain Arena. Listen to all the action LIVE at www.stingrayshockey.com. The Stingrays return to North Charleston Coliseum on Friday, March 26 against the Reading Royals at 7:05 p.m. for The Post and Courier Hall of Fame Night and Fan Appreciation Night. Friday is also FREE PARKING and $2 Beer Night. Don’t miss any of the fast-paced, hard-hitting action of the South Carolina Stingrays. Ticket packages for the 2010-11 season are on sale now for as low as $26 a month. Call the Stingrays front office at 744-2248 or click here for more information. For all the latest Stingrays news visit www.stingrayshockey.com. Stingrays Hockey – Family Affordable Entertainment.