The Stingrays fall in overtime in Atlanta on Friday night.
DULUTH, Ga. – The South Carolina Stingrays (25-18-4-0) were defeated by the Atlanta Gladiators (18-19-7-1) in overtime for the second consecutive day Friday, falling by a score of 2-1 when Justin MacDonald netted the winner 31 seconds into the extra session at the Infinite Energy Center.
Goaltender Parker Milner made 33 saves for the Rays in a losing effort, while forward Grant Besse scored the lone goal for South Carolina, potting his 20th tally of the season in the second period.
Atlanta broke the ice and took the initial lead at 14:23 of the opening period with a tally from Joseph Widmar that made it 1-0 in favor of the Gladiators.
Besse evened the score at 1-1 in the middle frame when he beat Gladiators’ goaltender Michael Bitzer with a backhand shot on a break at 8:46. The Plymouth, Minn. native’s seventh goal in his last eight games came with one assist by defender Vinny Muto.
With the score even, the two teams played a scoreless third period where both goaltenders kept their opponents off the scoreboard and overtime was required to find a winner for the second straight day.
MacDonald ended the game with the first shot on goal during overtime that came off a 2-on-1 for Atlanta.
Bitzer earned his first victory as a member of the Gladiators, turning aside 20 shots in between the pipes. Atlanta outshot SC 35-21 in the contest, while both teams came up short on the power play with the Gladiators finishing 0-for-4 and the Stingrays ending at 0-for-3.
South Carolina is back in action on Wednesday in Norfolk against the Admirals at the Norfolk Scope. The game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. The Stingrays return to the North Charleston Coliseum on Friday, February 15 for their first-ever matchup with the Newfoundland Growlers at 7:05 p.m. Tickets are on sale now!