Forward Chris Higgins scored a goal and two assists and goaltender Daren Machesney made 32 saves to help the South Carolina Stingrays (4-4) defeat the Kalamazoo Wings (6-2) 4-1 in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Semifinals at the North Charleston Coliseum Friday night. The Wings lead the best-of-seven series 3-1.
Stingrays forward Michael Dorr opened the scoring 2:52 into the first period tapping a pass from Higgins between the legs of Kalamazoo goaltender Riley Gill (L, 17 saves on 20 shots). Defenseman Derek Keller added the second assist. Forward Andrew Cherniwchan put the Stingrays up 2-0 at 9:24 from defenseman Brett Flemming and forward Patrick Cullen.
Higgins gave the Stingrays a three-goal lead at 7:47 of the third period lifting a shot over the glove of Gill from the left-wing circle. Forward Maxime Lacroix and defenseman Johann Kroll recorded assists. The Wings jumped on the board on the power play at 13:49 when forward Nick Sirota knocked a rebound past Machesney. Defenseman Matt Matczak and forward Dean Strong grabbed assists. Stingrays forward Billy Ryan sealed the victory with an empty-net goal at 19:35 from Higgins. The Stingrays went 0-for-4 on the power play while the Wings went 1-for-6.
Game Five of the Eastern Conference Semifinals series between the Stingrays and Kalamazoo Wings is Saturday, April 21 at 7:05 p.m. at the North Charleston Coliseum. Visit StingraysHockey.com for tickets and information.