ESTERO, Fla. – The South Carolina Stingrays (8-2-3-0) were unable to hold a first period lead and fell to the Florida Everblades (12-5-0-0) by a final score of 4-1 on Saturday night at Hertz Arena.
SC forward Brett Supinski had the only goal for the Rays, scoring in the first period for the second straight night, while goaltender Jake Kupsky turned aside 32 shots in a losing effort.
The Stingrays, who had earned points in six consecutive games coming into the matchup, fell in regulation for just the second time during the month of January.
Supinski started off the scoring for South Carolina, netting his third goal of the year from forward Mark Cooper and defender Cole Fraser to make it 1-0 on a redirect in front of the net at 4:25. The Rays took that one-goal advantage into the first intermission.
Although SC had a total of five power play opportunities in the middle period, including three 5-on-3 chances, they fell behind in the second stanza. Former Rays forward Alec Marsh was able to even the game up with a shorthanded goal against his old team at 12:24 before Alex Kile gave Florida their first lead of the night, 2-1, at 17:58.
The Blades tacked on two more tallies in the final frame, extending their advantage. Michael Huntebrinker made it 3-1 at 8:34 of the third, while Joe Pendenza scored the final goal of the game at 12:51.
Neither team was able to capitalize on the man-advantage in the contest, with the Stingrays ending at 0-for-7 while holding Florida to a 0-for-3 mark. Everblades goaltender Jake Hildebrand earned the win for Florida with 36 saves.