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Stingrays Deal Aces a 5-1 Loss

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The South Carolina Stingrays finished their preseason slate with a 5-1 drubbing of the Alaska Aces before an announced crowd of 5,871 Thursday evening at Sullivan Arena in Anchorage. 

For the second straight night South Carolina hit paydirt first, with Travis Morin picking up a rebound to beat former Charlotte Checkers goaltender Chris Holt at 4:12 of the 1st period.  The goal, assisted by Paul McIlveen and Keith Johnson, was Morin’s first of the preseason.

With a 90-second two-man advantage, Paul Kelly deposited his second of the preseason at the 10-minute mark of the 1st, making it 2-0 South Carolina.  Morin earned the primary assist while Johnson garnered his second playmaker of the game.

Enjoying their third power play of the contest, Kelly propelled the visitors to a 3-0 lead, tipping a shot past Holt at 12:06 of the opening frame.  No stranger to the scoresheet, Morin pocketed his third point of the night while rookie Johann Kroll, originally credited with the lamp-lighter, earned the second assist.

Derick Martin capped the first period scoring, blasting an attempt past Rays goalie Bobby Goepfert at 15:54.  Corbin Schmidt and Mike Curry doled out assists as the Aces skated into the first interference down 3-1.

Replacing starter Holt at 11:17 of the second period, Alexandre Vincent allowed a goal on the first shot he faced, with Matt Scherer beating the Alaska netminder high on the glove side at 11:28.  Morin and Kroll registered helpers as the Stingrays jumped out to a 4-1 advantage.

During the waning moments of the second stanza, Kelly completed his hat trick, firing the puck over Vincent’s glove hand at 19:28.  The power-play marker, assisted by Scherer and defenseman Sasha Pokulok, elevated South Carolina to a four-goal cushion that would last the final twenty minutes of the contest.   

Goepfert, who collected a pair of preseason wins for the Hershey Bears, earned the victory for the Stingrays with a 19-save effort.

Holt suffered the loss for Alaska with 10 saves while his replacement, Vincent, ended with 9 stops.


South Carolina opens the 2008-09 regular season on Saturday, Oct. 18 against the Augusta Lynx at the North Charleston Coliseum.  Face-off is set for 7:05 pm.

---------------------------------
South Carolina               3  2  0--5
Alaska                           1  0  0--1
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FIRST PERIOD – Scoring:  1, SC, Morin 1 (McIlveen, Johnson), 4:12.  2, SC, Kelly 2 (game-winner) (power-play) (Morin, Johnson), 10:00.  3, SC, Kelly 3 (power-play) (Morin, Kroll), 12:06.  4, AK, Martin 1 (power-play) (Schmidt, Curry), 15:54.  Penalties:  Dovgan, SC (roughing), 1:45;  Goepfert, SC, (tripping), 6:40;  Richards, AK (kneeing), 9:07;  Martin, AK (holding), 9:37;  Schmidt, AK (slashing), 11:17;  Waldrop, AK (hooking), 13:34;  McIlveen, SC (high-sticking), 15:04;  Farynuk, SC (hooking), 17:41.

SECOND PERIOD – Scoring:  5, SC, Scherer 1 (Morin, Kroll), 11:28.  6, SC, Kelly 4 (power-play) (Scherer, Pokulok), 19:28.  Penalties:  Keith, AK (unsportsmanlike conduct, misconduct), 2:46;  MacDermid, SC (interference), 8:03;  Romfo, SC (interference), 15:19;  AK bench, served by Thomey (too many men), 18:23.

THIRD PERIOD – Scoring:  None.  Penalties:  Foreman, AK (hooking, unsportsmanlike conduct), 3:26;  Shasby, AK (hooking), 4:15;  Johnson, SC (fighting major), 9:17;  Foreman, AK (fighting major), 9:17;  Romfo, SC (slashing), 12:08;  Pokulok, SC (roughing, unsportsmanlike conduct), 17:11;  Foreman, AK (roughing, unsportsmanlike conduct), 17:11.

Notes:  South Carolina finished 3-8 on the power-play, while Alaska ended at 1-7 … The Stingrays outshot the Aces 24-20 … Morin finished the two-game series with 6 points (1g, 5a) Johnson fought Alaska’s Jordan Foreman at 9:17 of the 3rd period … Brad Farynuk, Scherer and Morin served as alternate captains … 2008 ECHL All-Star Josh Soares, released Tuesday from the AHL’s Houston Aeros, did not play for Alaska … 3 Stars of the Game:  (1) Goepfert, (2) Kelly, (3) Morin … Referee:  Jason Nissen.

Mark your Calendars – the Stingrays open up the 2008-09 season at home against the Augusta Lynx on Saturday, October 18.  The game will be at the North Charleston Coliseum starting at 7:05 p.m.

Don’t miss any of the fast-paced, hard-hitting action of the 2008-09 season; purchase your ticket package today!  For more information, including benefits, pricing, and package options, call the Stingrays at 744-2248 or view the information online at www.stingrayshockey.com.
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