Stingrays Suffer 5-2 Setback To Florida

Stingrays Suffer 5-2 Setback To Florida
The Stingrays dropped a 5-2 decision to the Everblades at the Coliseum on Friday (Source: South Carolina Stingrays)

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Florida Everblades (15-5-0-1) scored goals in each period on their way to a 5-2 win over the South Carolina Stingrays (9-6-4-0) on Friday night at the North Charleston Coliseum.

VIDEO: Stingrays fall at home to Everblades on Friday

Linemates Dan DeSalvo and Mark Cooper each had multi-point nights in a losing effort for the Rays, with DeSalvo scoring a goal and an assist as Cooper picked up two helpers. Both South Carolina goals came via the power play, which finished 2-for-6 in the contest.

Florida’s Michael Huntebrinker scored for the second straight game late in the opening period at 18:57 to give the visitors a 1-0 lead at the first intermission.

Then in the opening minute of the second, John McCarron made it 2-0 with a power play tally 47 seconds into the middle frame.

Blake Winiecki pushed the lead to 3-0 for Florida at 11:04 of the second, scoring his eighth goal of the season.

The Rays were able to get themselves back in the game later in the frame, capitalizing on back-to-back penalties by the Everblades and scoring on both ensuing man-advantages to cut the deficit down to 3-2. During a 5-on-3 power play, Cam Askew converted on a centering feed by Cooper, knocking home his third goal of the year. DeSalvo was credited with the second assist on the team’s first goal of the evening.

Then just 24 seconds later, DeSalvo struck by finishing off an end-to-end rush with a wrist shot from the high slot that snuck just inside the left post and past Florida goaltender Devin Cooley’s blocker. DeSalvo’s fifth of the season came with assists by Cooper and defender Zach Malatesta.

South Carolina came into the final period down by just a goal, but they were unable to get any closer as Cooley stopped all 11 shots that came his way in the third. The Everblades netted their fourth tally of the night when Levko Koper scored at 4:43 of the final frame and added an empty-net goal to seal the win off the stick of Joe Pendenza in the closing minute at 19:09.

The two clubs finished even with 33 shots-on-goal apiece during the game. Cooley turned aside 31 shots to earn his fifth win of the year for Florida, while Sean Bonar stopped 28 of the Everblades’ chances. Florida finished 1-for-4 on the man-advantage.

This week’s 3-game series between the two rivals will wrap up on Saturday with Military Appreciation Night at the North Charleston Coliseum which begins at 6:05 p.m. SC will complete their homestand on Sunday afternoon when they host Jacksonville at 3:05.