CHARLOTTE, NC—The Charlotte Checkers held a late third-period lead, took a costly penalty and then fell to the South Carolina Stingrays in overtime on Wednesday evening at Time Warner Cable Arena.
With the win, South Carolina increased their league-high win streak to 11 games. Charlotte, having picked up a point in overtime, is now 7-1-1 in its last nine games at home.
The Checkers were without the services of leading scorer Michel Leveille and former ECHL All-Star defenseman Steve Ward, who both sat out with injuries.
Neither team could get anything going in the first period as only 13 shots were recorded and no penalties were called.
The Checkers then opened the scoring with less than two minutes to play in the second period. David Marshall took a pass from Andrew Carroll and let a wrist shot go from the left side that trickled between the legs of Stingrays goaltender Todd Ford.
Just over eight minutes into the third period, South Carolina would tie the game on a goal by forward Gregg Johnson. Johnson streaked down the left wing and let a slap shot go that beat Ryan Munce over the glove.
Charlotte then regained the lead five minutes later when the team’s leading goal scorer Kenny Roche lifted a shot past Ford on the short side. The goal was Roche’s fifth in the last five games and was assisted by Tyler Doig and Mike Taylor.
With two and a half minutes to play in the game, defenseman Kevin Schaeffer was assessed a five-minute major penalty and the Stingrays took advantage on the power play as Matt Fornataro scored the game-tying goal.
South Carolina remained on the power play but Munce shut the door, saving a point in the standings, and the teams prepared for overtime.
In the overtime period, Stingrays defenseman Josh Godfrey took a pass from Nikita Kashirsky and one-timed a shot past Munce for the game-winner. The goal was a power-play marker as the major penalty carried over into the extra frame.
Munce, who was named ECHL Goaltender of the Week on Tuesday, stopped 29 of 32 shots, while Ford stopped 27 for the victory.
The Checkers (14-7-4-0) will once again host the Stingrays on Friday at Time Warner Cable Arena. Game time is 7 p.m. and ticket information can be obtained by calling 704-342-4-ICE or visiting www.gocheckers.com
Notes: Kenny Roche has five goals in his last five games, including two game-winners…Ryan Munce has stopped 112 of the last 116 shots he has faced…the Checkers are 7-1-1 in their last nine home games…T.J. Reynolds leads all ECHL defensemen with 99 penalty minutes and 11 fighting majors and leads the Checkers with a +15 rating…In Friday’s game, Randy Rowe played in his 500th pro game and Harder his 600th…Derek Couture remains on loan to Hartford, Daniel Tkaczuk is with Syracuse, Matt Ford remains with Lake Erie (AHL) and defenseman Ethan Graham is with Norfolk (AHL)…Trevor Glass, Codey Burki and Aaron Slattengren are on the 21-day injured reserve.
South Carolina Stingrays 3 (OT) At Charlotte Checkers 2 - Status: Final OT
Dec 16, 2009 - Time Warner Cable Arena
South Carolina 0 0 2 1 - 3
Charlotte 0 1 1 0 - 2
1st Period- No Scoring.Penalties-No Penalties
2nd Period-1, Charlotte, Marshall 5 (Carroll, Berube), 18:10. Penalties-Reynolds Chr (roughing), 3:55; Scherer Sc (interference), 4:38; Snavely Chr (hooking), 7:47; Rowe Chr (interference), 9:12; Yeo Sc (high-sticking), 19:40.
3rd Period-2, South Carolina, Johnson 9 (Johnson), 8:16. 3, Charlotte, Roche 13 (Doig, Taylor), 13:20. 4, South Carolina, Fornataro 13 (Godfrey, Johnson), 17:47 (pp). Penalties-Johnson Sc (high-sticking), 5:47; Doig Chr (high-sticking), 10:48; Schaeffer Chr (cross-checking major, game misconduct - cross-checking), 17:30.
OT Period-5, South Carolina, Godfrey 3 (Kashirsky), 1:41 (pp). Penalties-Doig Chr (misconduct), 1:41.
Shots on Goal-South Carolina 6-10-13-3-32. Charlotte 7-12-9-1-29.
Power Play Opportunities-South Carolina 2 of 6; Charlotte 0 of 3.
Goalies-South Carolina, Ford 13-4-0-1 (29 shots-27 saves). Charlotte, Munce 5-2-1-0 (32 shots-29 saves).
Referees-Curtis Marouelli (24).
Linesmen-Dan Cohen (65), Mathieu Chenier (71).