Machesney, Stewart Lead Rays over Gladiators in Game OneApril 3, 2012
NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. – For the first time all season the Gwinnett Gladiators were shutout, dropping Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals to the South Carolina Stingrays 3-0. Daren Machesney made 20 saves and the Rays took a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five series.
Forward Greg Stewart led the way for the Rays with two goals, while Pierre-Luc O’Brien chipped in two assists. Game Two of the series is Wednesday night at 7:05 p.m. at North Charleston Coliseum, while the Gladiators return home for Game Three Friday night at 7:05 p.m. at the Arena at Gwinnett Center.
Stingrays defenseman Johann Kroll netted the lone goal of the first period. At 10:40 he blasted a slapper from between the circles past Gladiators goalie Marc Cheverie on the power play to push South Carolina ahead 1-0.
In the second, Stewart rifled a quick wrist shot from the far side past Cheverie to extend the South Carolina edge to 2-0 at 12:16. Gwinnett headed into the third down by two with shots even at 16-16.
South Carolina asserted themselves defensively in the final period, holding the Gladiators to just four shots. Stewart provided further breathing room just 1:26 in, following up on a rebound chance point blank and beating Cheverie high glove side for his second tally of the night.
The Gladiators were outshot 26-20, and were held scoreless on just two power-play chances, both coming in the first period. South Carolina went 1-for-4 on the man advantage.