A furious comeback attempt in the third period wasn’t enough for the South Carolina Stingrays (0-2-0-0) on Monday night, coming up just short in a 5-4 loss to the Orlando Solar Bears (1-1-0-0) at the Amway Center.Defenseman Kevin McKernan and forward Jake Kamrass each scored their second goal in as many games to begin the season for SC, while forwards Christian Horn and Grant Besse also added tallies in the loss for the Rays.
Orlando took an early 1-0 lead when Colby McAuley scored on the second Solar Bears shot of the game just 1:08 into the opening period.
But the Stingrays tied things up at 1-1 as their first power play of the game was expiring. Joey Leach unleashed a shot from the center point that was tipped in by Horn at 5:36, one second after a penalty to Orlando’s Hunter Fejes had expired. A second assist was also given on the play to forward Jonathan Charbonneau.After tying the game, the Stingrays took control of the action and ended up outshooting the Solar Bears 16-5 in the opening frame.
However the Solar Bears came out for the second period and reversed the pace of play, outshooting SC 13-8 and scoring three times to take a commanding 4-1 advantage. Vincent Dunn scored at 4:46, while Brent Pedersen added two tallies at 14:19 and 19:00.Another strike for Orlando’s McAuley at 1:55 of the third increased the Solar Bear lead to 5-1 before South Carolina started their comeback bid.
McKernan found the back of the net for the second straight game to bring the Stingrays one closer at 3:17 with an assist from Nick Roberto.
Then Kamrass pounded in a rebound off an initial shot by Horn a little more than a minute later at 4:23 to make it 5-3. Defender Tim Davison was credited with a second assist on the goal, his first professional point.
A late penalty to Orlando’s Chris LeBlanc at 17:26 allowed the Rays to pull goaltender Adam Morrison for a 6-on-4 advantage and South Carolina capitalized when Besse wristed a shot to the back of the net for his first strike of the season. Charbonneau and Leach picked up assists on the goal that cut things down to a one-goal deficit at 5-4.
But the late rally ran out of time and the Stingrays came up short by a goal, despite out-shooting the Solar Bears 36-27 in the contest.
Orlando finished 1-for-4 on the power play, while South Carolina was 1-for-6 on the man-advantage. Netminder Martin Ouellette picked up his first win of the year for the Solar Bears after stopping 32 shots, while Morrison made 22 saves and took the loss for the Rays.
The two teams will match up again in Orlando on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. The Stingrays then open their home schedule vs. Greenville on Saturday, Oct. 20 with Opening Night: Capitals Championship Celebration presented by STASH Storage. Tickets are on sale now!
Season tickets are on sale now! For more information or to purchase, contact the Stingrays by phone at 843-744-2248 or visit 3300 W. Montague Ave. Suite A-200 during business hours.