ECF Game 3 Preview- South Carolina at Wheeling, 7 p.m.May 18, 2016
South Carolina Stingrays (9-5 playoffs, 44-18-7-3 regular season)
Wheeling Nailers (9-6 playoffs, 37-26-5-4 regular season)
WesBanco Arena, 7:05 p.m.
WATCH PARTY AT KING STREET
Fans are encouraged to head to King Street Grille-
GAME 2 RECAP
After a 3-0 victory in Game 1, Saturday’s Game 2 appeared to be headed the same direction. With six minutes to play, South Carolina led 3-0 on home ice. However, the Nailers roared back with three goals in the final 5:56, including the tying goal from John McCarron with only 1:12 to play. Jarrett Burton scored the double-overtime winner on the power play after the Stingrays failed to score on parts of four power plays in overtime.
RACKING UP THE POINTS
Forwards David Pacan and Austin Fyten have teamed with Caleb Herbert to form one of the most dangerous lines in the postseason. Both Fyten and Pacan are both in the midst of point-streaks. Fyten has points in six straight games, notching seven points (three goals, four assists) in that span. Pacan has points in five straight (one goal, five assists). Joe Devin is also on a four-game point streak.
POWERED UP PENALTY KILLS
Through the first two games of the series, penalty killing has been the story. Only one power play goal has been scored in the series, as South Carolina is 0-for-8 on the man-advantage, while Wheeling is 1-for-8. Wheeling’s lone power play goal was the double-overtime winner in Game 2. The Stingrays are the top penalty kill in the playoffs at 88.9% while Wheeling is second at 88.0%.
All throughout the playoffs, Wheeling has had a knack for pulling off impressive comebacks when trailing. On the flip side, South Carolina, the ECHL's top defensive team in the postseason, had a knack for firmly holding leads. The Stingrays were 8-0 when leading after 40 minutes in the playoffs prior to Game 2. Additionally, in the regular season, the club was 33-1-1-0 when leading after two periods. However, Wheeling charged back in Game 2 to earn the double-overtime win, and improve to 2-5 in the playoffs when they trail after 40 minutes.
Goaltending has been a large key to South Carolina's success all-season long and that has been no different in the playoffs. A goal from Wheeling's Clark Seymour at 14:14 of the third period in Game 2 ended a shutout streak of 170:24. This mark dated back to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals versus Adirondack. The Thunder got a goal from Mitchell Heard at 19:14 of the second period, but the tandem of Mark Dekanich, and Vitek Vanecek, who replaced Dekanich due to injury, held the Thunder off the board for the rest of the double-overtime win. The streak continued into Game 1 versus Wheeling where Vanecek earned a 33-save shutout.
Defenseman Bobby Shea notched his first goal of the playoffs on Friday in South Carolina’s Game 1 win. The former Nailer skated in 36 games last season with Wheeling. Shea is the only player from either team in this series to have won a Kelly Cup Championship, which he won in 2013 with Reading.