Brittain's 38 Saves Force Game 7May 22, 2017
Manchester Monarchs’ goaltender Sam Brittain made 38 saves for a desperate team that scored five times to win Game 6 by a score of 5-1 over the South Carolina Stingrays on Monday night and force a Game 7 which will be played Wednesday night in Manchester.
The Stingrays’ only goal came late in the game from Olivier Archambault on the power play, while goaltender Parker Milner made 27 saves in a losing effort.
South Carolina outshot Manchester 39-34 on the night but were unsuccessful early in the game against Brittain before falling behind.
Tyler Sikura opened the scoring by taking advantage of Manchester’s second power play in the first period and made it 1-0 Monarchs with a wrist shot at 15:51 of the opening period, just eight seconds into the man-advantage.
The Monarchs extended their lead to 2-0 at 16:28 of the middle frame on a goal by Matt Leitner from Zac Lynch and Craig Wyszomirski.
Trailing by two tallies to start the third, South Carolina was unable to get on the board in the early part of the period and fell further behind on Manchester goals by Ashton Rome, Sikura and Daniel Ciampini.
Rome’s eighth of the postseason made it 3-0 at 8:51 of the third, while Sikura’s second of the game was registered at 15:53 and Ciampini’s fourth of the playoffs finished the scoring for Manchester at 16:56.
Archambault’s late power play marker came at 18:39 and ended Brittain’s bid for a shutout. The Montreal native’s fifth strike of the postseason came with assists to defensemen Joey Leach and Cody Corbett.
The Monarchs finished 1-for-4 on the power play, while South Carolina was 1-for-2 with the man advantage. After Manchester’s fifth goal, Adam Carlson replaced Milner for the final 3:04 of the game and made two saves.
The two teams will play Game 7 on Wednesday night at the SNHU Arena in Manchester for a spot in the Kelly Cup Finals. It will be the third consecutive season that South Carolina has played a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Rays took the winner-take-all game in 2015 against the Toledo Walleye but lost in 2016 to the Wheeling Nailers.
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Photo Credit: Rich Tilton