It was a good road victory for the South Carolina Stingrays on Sunday afternoon. The only problem was that the game was at the North Charleston Coliseum.
Chad Painchaud and Wayne Simpson each had a goal and Jeff Jakaitis made 26 saves to lead South Carolina past Gwinnett, 2-1, Sunday before a crowd of 3,012 at the North Charleston Coliseum.
The Stingrays, who lost for the first time in regulation Saturday night against Florida, rebounded with the victory to improve to 10-1-2 (22 points) on the season and move into a tie for first place in the South Division. The Gladiators dropped to 4-10-0 (8 points).
The Stingrays played a tough, conservative, physical game on Sunday, to secure their fourth win against Gladiators this season.
“It was a lot like a road win,” said South Carolina coach Spencer Carbery. “We made better decisions with the puck and we were pretty good in our defensive end. We’re playing in spurts right now. We’re still making too many mistakes.”
The Stingrays, who looked lethargic in their 4-1 loss to Florida on Saturday night, played with more energy against the Gladiators.
“We won more battles and got to more loose pucks,” Carbery said. “We won more 50-50 battles this afternoon, but we’re still making some questionable decisions with the pucks. I know we don’t have everyone in the lineup, but we’ve got to have a high standard no matter who is on the ice.”
Painchaud not only proved to be difference on the scoresheet, the veteran forward also was blocking shots. Two times he was hit in his leg blocking a shot and limped back to the Stingrays bench.
“That’s leading by example,” Carbery said. “When a veteran guy, an offensive guy, is blocking shots, the guys on the bench get fired up.”
The Gladiators grabbed a 1-0 lead on Maxime Legault’s power-play goal. Marshall Everson ripped a shot on net that Jakaitis failed to control. The puck bounced out of Legault, who wristed it past Jakaitis for the score at the 15:56 mark of the opening period.
The Stingrays answered as Wayne Simpson bulled his way to the front of the net, knocking in Scott Campbell’s rebound with less than a minute left in the first period.
The Stingrays pushed their advantage to 2-1 on Painchaud’s goal early in the second period. Jordan Owens got the puck behind the net and slid it out front to Painchaud, who ripped a shot past Gwinnett goalie Peter Delmas for the score.
Gwinnett 1 0 0—1
Stingrays 1 1 0—2
First Period: 1. G, Legault 3 (Everson, Walker), 15:56. 2. SC, Simpson, 1 (Campbell, Spinell), 19:02. Penalties: Bloodoff, G (tripping), 3:09; Grimshaw, SC (hooking), 15:28.
Second Period: 3. SC, Painchaud 6 (Owens, Cherniwchan), 7:52. Penalties: Malouin, G (elbowing, fighting), 2:14; Boyd, SC (interference, fighting), 2:14; Pallis, SC (interference), 8:20; Malouin, G (high sticking, fighting), 11:10; Currie, SC (fighting), 11:10; Hagel, G (cross checking), 19:57.
Third Period: No goals. Penalties: Guimond, G (slashing), 12:50; Spinell, SC (slashing), 12:50.
Shots on Goal: Stingrays 6-10-14-30; Gwinnett:10-8-9-27. Penalties: Stingrays 7-20; Gwinnett 6-18. Power Play: Stingrays: 0 for 2; Gwinnett 1 for 3. Goalies: Stingrays – Jeff Jakaitis (8-1-2) 27 shots, 26 saves. Gwinnett – Peter Delmas (2-3-0) 30 shots, 28 saves. Att: 3,012.