Forward Tyler Johnson scored two goals and an assist and netted the game-winning shootout goal to give the South Carolina Stingrays (12-12-0-2) a 6-5 victory over the Trenton Titans (8-10-1-2) at the North Charleston Coliseum Saturday evening. The Stingrays collected over 2,000 stuffed toys tonight during their annual Teddy Bear Toss benefitting Debi's Kids.
The Titans jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead behind a pair of goals from forward Kelly Zajac at 5:28 and 7:33 of the first period beating Stingrays goaltender Adam Morrison (eight saves on 12 shots). Stingrays forward Chris Langkow cut the lead in half and scored the teddy-bear goal at 13:57 tapping a pass from forward Matthew Pistilli past the blocker of Titans netminder Niko Hovinen (L, 30 saves on 35 shots). Forward Tyler Johnson added the second assist. Forward Hunter Bishop tied the game eight seconds later with help from forwards Tyler McNeely and Daniel Koger. Johnson gave the Stingrays a 3-2 lead at 17:54 from Pistilli and defenseman Damon Kipp, but the Titans evened the contest less than a minute later with forward Kory Nagy's first goal of the season at 18:48.
Forward Ian Slater reclaimed the lead for the Titans at 5:44 of the second frame. After the goal, Morrison was pulled in favor of Ryan Zapolski (W, 20 saves on 21 shots ). Forward Stephen Schultz put the Titans up 5-3 on the power play at 13:47. Johnson pulled the game back within one at 16:45 from McNeely and Pistilli.
Langkow forced overtime and the shootout with the game-tying tally at 18:06 of the third period with help from forward Justin Courtnall and defenseman Scooter Vaughan. Koger and Johnson scored in the shootout to seal the victory for the Stingrays. The Stingrays ended the game 0-for-2 on the power play while the Titans went 1-for-2.
The Stingrays battle the Greenville Road Warriors tomorrow, Sunday, December 9 at 4:00 p.m. at the Bi-Lo Center in Greenville, South Carolina and return to the North Charleston Coliseum on Tuesday, December 11 against the Road Warriors at 7:05 p.m.