Cam Askew scored his first professional goal and was named the game’s No. 1 star after it held up as the game-winner to secure a 3-2 victory for the South Carolina Stingrays (9-8-0-0) Wednesday night over the Orlando Solar Bears (8-6-2-0) at the Amway Center.
Forwards Tad Kozun and Grant Besse also scored in the first period for South Carolina, while goaltender Parker Milner earned the win with 28 saves and defender Tim Davison picked up two assists.
The Stingrays got themselves on top early with a beautiful play off the rush that ended with forward Patrick Gaul leaving a pass to Kozun for a tap-in tally at the front of the Orlando net. The Nipawin, Sask. native’s second goal of the season also came with an assist from forward Tim Harrison.
Orlando tied things up at 1-1 when Brent Pedersen scored at 5:36 of the opening frame.
But Grant Besse put South Carolina back in front 2-1 with a power play goal at 14:59 of the first, a lead the Stingrays never relinquished. Besse’s team-leading 11th goal of the year came with assists from forward Jonathan Charbonneau and Davison.
Askew added to the advantage at 8:06 of the middle period, scoring on a wrist shot off the rush that was set up by Kozun. Davison earned the second assist on the goal, which came in Askew’s sixth game for South Carolina.
The Solar Bears quickly cut the Rays’ lead back to 3-2 on a goal by Troy Bourke at 8:24 of the second, but Orlando was unable to find an equalizer. South Carolina held the Bears to just eight shots in the third period, preserving the one-goal lead all the way until the final buzzer.
Orlando goaltender Hayden Stewart took the loss for the Solar Bears, stopping 31 shots in the contest. Besse had the lone power play strike in the game and the Rays finished 1-for-5 on the man-advantage while Orlando ended at 0-for-3.
South Carolina will complete their week-long 3-game road trip when they go up against the Atlanta Gladiators at the Infinite Energy Arena on Friday night at 7:35 p.m. The Stingrays will return home next month with some big games including Social Media Night on Dec. 7 and Teddy Bear Toss on Dec. 8.
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.