ECHL Game Recap: South Carolina Stingrays vs. Greenville Swamp Rabbits | 01/19/2024

Photo Credit: Bernie Walls for Inside The Rink

The cross-state rivalry was reignited as the Swamp Rabbits returned to the North Charleston Coliseum for another match-up against the South Carolina Stingrays. The Swamp Rabbits are still sitting at the top of the Eastern Conference and have won the last two meetups against the Rays. Mitchell Gibson will get the start in goal against former Stingray and Greenville’s All-Star participant Ryan Bednard.

In the first period, Greenville struck first as Jordan Timmons found the back of the net unassisted five minutes into the period. Tensions started to rise on the ice as Jarid Luckosevicius and Ethan Cap scruffed in front of the net. The roughhousing continued into the period as Tyson Empey and Joe Leahy headed into the box for roughing. A delayed high stick would be called on LA Grissom, giving the Stingrays their first-man advantage of the night. No goals would come out of the advantage. Greenville would have a wide-open shot on Gibson with less than two minutes left in the period, as Nick Prkusic would bury it in the net with help from Jake Smith and LA Grissom.

Michael Kim came out swinging from intermission as he sent a rocket from the blue line that made contact with Bednard and trickled in, narrowing the Swamp Rabbits lead to one. The Stingrays continued to apply pressure in the period and Greenville was not letting up on the intensity. A blindside hit was taken on All-Star Connor Moore, forcing Tyson Empey and Jordan Timmons to drop the mitts and take a spin seven minutes into the second. Connor Moore would be sent to the box with 32 seconds in the period for a slash, pushing the Swamp Rabbits on a man advantage going into the final period of play. 

The Stingrays were able to hold off the Rabbits man advantage going into the third period, but they did keep the momentum as Joe Leahy scored, making it 3-1. The play continued with little stops, as both teams battled back and fourth for possession. With 2:49 left in the period, Gibson headed to the bench for the extra attacker. Luckosevicius buried the biscuit past Bednard to lower the lead to just one goal. The Stingrays continued to give it their all in the zone, but it wouldn’t be enough. Bednard is making it very apparent he is still riding the All-Star high and showing off his skills after helping lead the Stars to a win against the home team this past weekend. 

South Carolina hits the road tonight to play Atlanta tomorrow night and returns back home to the coliseum on Sunday to take on Orlando. 

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