DULUTH, GA – The South Carolina Stingrays (13-5-1-1) tallied five power play goals as they cruised past the Atlanta Gladiators (13-7-1-0) by a final score of 7-3 on Wednesday night at Gas South Arena.
South Carolina jumped out to an early lead behind Carter Turnbull’s team-leading 12th goal of the year just under five minutes into the opening period. Tarek Baker passed the puck between his legs from the endline where Turnbull crashed the net and flung a shot past Atlanta’s David Tendeck for the 1-0 advantage.
Turnbull added his second of the game on South Carolina’s first power play of the contest with under three minutes left in the first period. Andrew Cherniwchan sent a shot on net from the left circle and Turnbull cleaned up the rebound, beating Tendeck for the 2-0 lead to close out the opening frame.
The Stingrays began the second period with a five-on-three power play that saw Justin Florek net his third marker of the season. Florek collected a bouncing puck at the top of the crease where the forward jammed the puck through the five-hole of the netminder for the 3-0 lead.
Alex Fortin netted his fifth goal of the season 40 seconds later for the Stingrays’ third power play goal of the contest. Matt Anderson chipped the puck down the wall where Fortin broke to the inside of the right circle and snapped a shot into the back of the net for a 4-0 advantage.
Just over three minutes later, Josh Wilkins added to the lead with his sixth goal of the year. While on the man-advantage. Kevin O’Neil fed Wilkins in the slot where the centerman fired a one-timer past Tendeck for the 5-0 lead. Wilkin’s goal was the second five-on-three power play goal of the evening.
Anthony Del Gaizo made it a 6-0 Stingrays advantage with his fourth tally of the year at the 7:48 mark of the second period. Del Gaizo’s initial pass was blocked down and the forward shoveled the second chance effort into the net to expand the Stingrays’ lead.
Atlanta netted their first goal of the contest with under seven minutes remaining in the second period as Cody Sylvester skied the puck for his ninth marker of the season. An odd-man rush for Atlanta saw Colin Theisen feed Sylvester on the right circle to get on the board.
After killing off a penalty early in the third period, Benton Maass scored his first professional goal at the 1:08 mark of the frame to regain the six-goal lead. Maass approached the right circle and fired a one-timer past Tendeck for the 7-1 advantage.
Atlanta finished off the scoring with back-to-back goals from Sanghoon Shin and Eric Neiley. At the 6:59 mark of the third frame, Shin cut to the front of the net and received a pass from Bode Wilde that he redirected past South Carolina’s Tyler Wall.
Neiley completed the contest with his team-leading 12th goal of the season with under six minutes left in regulation. The forward cleaned up a rebound off an initial shot from Sylvester for the 7-3 final.
The Stingrays return to action this Saturday, December 17th, as the team returns home to take on the Savannah Ghost Pirates at the North Charleston Coliseum beginning at 6:05 pm. The Stingrays will wear specialty Garfield jerseys for Nickelodeon Garfield Night presented by SERVPRO of Greater North Charleston. Game-worn jerseys will be auctioned off during the game through the Dash Auction App.
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