WICHITA, KS – In their first ever meeting, the South Carolina Stingrays left Intrust Bank Arena victorious over the hapless Wichita Thunder.
Wichita has now lost four straight games and 15 of their last 16.
South Carolina struck first with a goal from Brendan Ellis at 2:31 of the first. Minutes later, Erick Lizon and Trevor Gillies lined up next to each other in the faceoff circle, exchanged some words, shed some gear and fought at center ice. The fight was a draw, with both men landing their fair share of punches.
Shortly after the tet-au-tet, the Thunder would level the game at 1, when Landon Oslanski drilled a one-timer from the left circle past Mark Dekanich for his 10th of the season.
The wheels fell off the shaky Thunder effort in the second period. South Carolina lit the lamp three times in seven minutes, to put the game out of reach.
Caleb Herbert, who was just sent down from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), recorded back-to-back goals to get the Stingrays going in the middle frame. His first came on a breakaway at 4:14. He notched his second of the night at 8:23 to increase the lead to 3-1. The final goal of the seven minute onslaught came when David Pacan found the net at 11:44 for his 16th of the year to make it 4-1.
Brett Cameron wrapped up the scoring on the power play to give the Stingrays a 5-1 lead at 17:52 of the period.
The Stingrays have collected points in six straight games and are fifth in the Eastern Conference, percentage points behind Adirondack for the final home-ice position. Wichita continues to be mired in last place in the ECHL, with a 10-30-4-4 record.
The same two teams will play again tonight at Intrust Bank Arena. Face-off is set for 7:05 pm.