It wasn't the best game the South Carolina Stingrays have played recently, but no one was complaining in the locker room afterward.
Rob Ricci had a goal and two assists, and Matt Scherer got the game- winner with less than seven minutes remaining as the Stingrays beat Toledo, 3-2, on Sunday afternoon before a crowd of 2,151 at the North Charleston Coliseum.
The Stingrays, who snapped a three-game losing streak, improved to 7-10-1 (15 points). The Walleye dropped to 6-10-2 (14 points).
For a team that hadn't scored a goal in more than three games, just getting on the scoreboard was an accomplishment. Winning was a bonus.
The Stingrays had gone 193 minutes and 40 seconds without a goal coming into the game. David de Kastrozza ended that drought with a goal
midway through the opening period.
"I had no doubt we were going to score a goal tonight, but the longer something like that continues the more the guys squeeze their sticks," said South Carolina coach Cail MacLean said. "We needed a win tonight and it didn't matter how we got it. This certainly wasn't the best game we've played lately, but we did just enough to get the win."
The Stingrays played a much better game Friday night against Gwinnett in a 1-0 loss. The Stingrays had outshot the Gladiators, 32-13, including a 15-5 advantage in the third, only to leave the ice with the loss.
The Stingrays spent most of Saturday's practice shooting the puck. The dividends were evident Sunday.
"To say we've been through a little bit of dry spell here lately would be an understatement," Scherer said. "We knew it was imperative that we come out a little more aggressive. We spent a lot of time in practice (Saturday) working on our finishing around the net. I think that really helped us here today."
The Stingrays certainly didn't get the start they were looking for. Less than three minutes into the game, Toledo defenseman Joe Charlebois chipped a routine dump-in on net. Stingrays rookie goalie Jared DeMichiel was going to paddle the shot into the corner, but the puck slid under his stick and into the net.
"When you're struggling like we've been doing lately, that's the last thing you want to happen," MacLean said. "But give the guys credit, they didn't hang their heads."
After da Kastrozza's goal, Toledo's Mike Hedden gave the Walleye a 2-1 advantage with his rebound shot midway through the second period.
Six minutes later Ricci, who had a hand in all three goals for the Stingrays, tied the game on his short-handed goal.
Scherer got the game-winner late in the third period when he slammed home a Jordan Peitrus rebound.
--Maxime Lacroix (Hershey) and Trent Campbell (Bridgeport) were called up to the American Hockey League.
--The Stingrays are 5-3-1 at home and 2-7-0 on the road
First Period: 1. T, Charlebois 1 (Rogers, Torquato), 2:32. 2. SC, de Katrozza 4 (Ricci, Karshirsky), 9:20. Penalties: Gotto, T (interference), 7:43; Milo, SC (tripping), 12:47; Krantz, T (interference), 16:31.
Second Period: 3. T, Hedden 3 (Rankin, Gotto), 11:58. 4. SC, Ricci 7 (unassisted), 17:50. Penalties: Charlebois, T (roughing), 3:10; O'Brien, SC (goalie interference), 9:47; Cullity, SC (slashing), 16:01; Keefe, T (roughing), 17:50; Kroll, SC (slashing), 17:50; Bohmbach, T (slashing), 18:53; Godfrey, SC (tripping), 19:50.
Third Period: Penalties: O'Brien, SC (boarding), 4:13; Pietrus, SC (slashing), 15:40; Keefe, T (tripping), 18:09.
Shots on Goal: Stingrays 12-9-9-30; Toledo: 5-13-5-23. Penalties: Stingrays 6-12; Toledo 7-14. Power Play: Stingrays 1 for 5; Toledo 0 for 6. Goalies: Stingrays - Jared DeMichiel (4-4-0) 23 shots, 21 saves. Toledo - Scott Campbell (3-4-2) 30 shots, 27 saves. A: 2,151.