Stingrays Scare Ghost Pirates in 5-3 Win
SAVANNAH, GA – The South Carolina Stingrays (6-2-0-0) fought back from a two-goal deficit to defeat the Savannah Ghost Pirates (5-2-1-0) by a final score of 5-3 on Friday night. The contest, held at the Enmarket Arena, was the first franchise matchup between the two teams.
Bear Hughes opened the scoring with his fifth goal in the last three games at the 3:36 mark of the first period. Gavin Gould carried the puck across the blue line and sent a pass to Hughes who fired a shot past Savannah’s Darion Hanson for the 1-0 advantage.
The Ghost Pirates bounced back with a pair of goals in the final 4:02 to close out the opening period. Peter DiLiberatore chipped a puck to the slot where Westin Michaud lifted it over Clay Stevenson to tie the game at one goal apiece.
With 10 seconds remaining in the period, Brent Pedersen gave Savannah their first lead of the contest, banking a shot off of a Stingrays’ defender and into the back of the net. The marker was Pedersen’s third of the year and second in the last two games.
After killing off a Stingrays power play, the Ghost Pirates expanded their lead on Connor Corcoran’s first goal of the season. Daniel D’Amato placed a perfect pass to the backdoor where Corcoran redirected the puck for the 3-1 lead just over two minutes into the second period.
The Stingrays stormed back midway through the contest as Carter Turnbull netted his team-leading eighth goal of the season, tying him for the most goals in the ECHL. Turnbull’s patience paid off as he skated the offensive zone and ended up at the right circle where he snapped the shot past Hanson to cut the deficit in half.
South Carolina took advantage of a missed clearing attempt from the Ghost Pirates that resulted in Hughes’ second tally of the night just over two minutes later. Fresh off the bench, Hughes raced into the zone and collected the puck at the right circle where he fired a shot over Hanson to tie the game with his sixth goal of the season.
Entering the third period tied, Michael Kim found the perfect time for South Carolina’s first shorthanded goal of the season. Tarek Baker chipped a pass beyond the Savannah defense where Kim turned on the boosters for the breakaway as he shoveled a shot into the back of the net to regain the Stingrays’ lead with 9:50 remaining in regulation.
Kevin O’Neil placed the game out of reach with 1:16 remaining in the third period as he netted his fifth marker of the season. Savannah pulled their netminder, giving O’Neil an open net to fire a shot from center ice for the 5-3 victory.
The Stingrays continue their 2022-23 campaign this upcoming Tuesday, November 15 when the team heads to Orlando, FL to take on the Solar Bears for the second time this season. Puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m.
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