The South Carolina Stingrays (12-11-0-0) scored two power play goals and got a shorthanded tally from Andrew Cherniwchan before goaltender Parker Milner held off a late surge by the Jacksonville Icemen (13-9-1-0) to preserve a 3-2 win on Friday night at the North Charleston Coliseum.
Jonathan Charbonneau, Grant Besse and Shane Eiserman each picked up multiple points for South Carolina in the win.
With the victory, South Carolina is now 6-0-0 in Friday night games this season.
The Rays took the 1-0 lead on a power play goal by Charbonneau from Eiserman and Besse at 9:03 of the first. A nice passing play on the man-advantage got the rookie from St-Colombant, Que. open on the left circle for a shot past the blocker of Jacksonville goaltender Ken Appleby. The tally was Charbonneau’s fifth strike of the season.
Later in the frame, Cherniwchan scored his ninth goal of the year shorthanded off a 2-on-1 to make it 2-0. Besse, who began the odd man rush from his own zone, drew the lone Jacksonville defender his way before placing a pass right on the stick of Cherniwchan, who quickly fired the puck into the net at 15:27 of the opening period.
Although both teams were scoreless in the middle period, the Icemen outshot SC 13-6 and had many opportunities in the Stingrays’ end. Timely stops by Milner and three Jacksonville shots that found their way off posts kept the Icemen off the board in the second.
Eiserman struck for his fifth goal of his rookie season on a deflection at 6:15 of the third period to extend SC’s lead to 3-0. The intial shot, which was taken by Tim Davison, went toward Eiserman who was camped out near the left post while the Rays were on the power play and was tipped past Appleby. Charbonneau earned the second assist on the tally, which gave South Carolina their second man-advantage goal of the night.
Late in the contest, the Icemen got back in the game with a tally by Max Fortier at 7:22 of the third, cutting the lead to 3-1. Then, with an empty net at the other end, Kris Newbury found the back of the net off a pass by Wacey Rabbit to make it 3-2 at 17:51.
But SC was able to control the remaining 2:09 and secured their 12th victory of the season and first of the year over Jacksonville.
The Stingrays finished 2-for-6 on the power play, while holding the Icemen to an 0-for-4 mark. Jacksonville outshot SC 34-27 in the game, with Appleby stopping 24 shots during a losing effort.
South Carolina hosts Atlanta on Saturday at 7:05 p.m. for Teddy Bear Toss Night, where fans will toss stuffed animals on the ice after the Rays’ first goal and the first 2,000 fans at the game will receive a Stingrays Santa Hat!
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.