Rays Roll Thunder 4-1 to Force Game 7May 10, 2016
The Eastern Conference Semifinals series between the South Carolina Stingrays and the Adirondack Thunder will come down to one game tomorrow night. The Stingrays (7-3-1) earned a 4-1 victory in Game 6 Tuesday night over the Thunder (7-4-0) to tie the series, 3-3, and force a decisive Game 7 tomorrow night at the North Charleston Coliseum. Stephan Vigier had two goals for the Stingrays and Kelly Zajac had three assists in a physical game that saw 120 penalty minutes called, including 98 in the third period.
With their backs against the wall, the Stingrays used the home crowd of 3,066 fans to jump out to a 2-0 lead. Joe Devin notched his team-leading eighth goal of the postseason to open the scoring just 6:37 into the game. Zajac won a face-off back to Devin and the forward snapped a shot under the glove of Thunder goaltender Ken Appleby to make it 1-0.
Vigier would score his first of two goals at 12:45 mark of the opening frame, connecting on a great passing play. The forward parked in front of the goal and got a stick on a Zajac pass from the right wing. Spencer Humphries also assisted on Vigier's third goal of the playoffs.
A 5-on-3 power play goal from Adirondack's Mathieu Brodeur with only 12 seconds left in the first period cut the South Carolina lead in half, making it 2-1 after 20 minutes.
South Carolina struck twice in the middle period and outshot the Thunder 10-2 in the frame to add to its lead. The club scored it's second of three power play goals as Austin Fyten connected on a one-time shot from the right wing to make it 3-1. The goal was Fyten's fourth of the postseason and was assisted by Nick D'Agostino and Bobby Shea.
Vigier would score again at 14:57 of the second period, taking advantage of a 5-on-3 power play with a shot under the crossbar from close quarters. Zajac collected his third assist, moving the puck to Vigier on the right side of the crease. The forward took a step back and ripped a shot over the glove of Appleby to make it 4-1.
The third period saw no goals, but a lengthy delay to fix a piece of broken glass, and five fights in the final 1:10, including a bout between Trevor Gillies and Ryan Lomberg.
The Stingrays finished 3-for-6 on the power play while Adirondack went 1-for-8. South Carolina outshot the Thunder 30-19 in the victory. South Carolina's Mark Dekanich collected the win on his 30th birthday, stopping 18 shots.
The series will be decided tomorrow night at 7:05 p.m. with Game 7. Tickets are on sale now via the North Charleston Coliseum Box Office or via Ticketmaster.com.