Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Guerin's Hat Trick Gives Stingrays 2-0 Series Lead

Marty Guerin
Photo: Mic Smith / The Post and Courier

No, not that Guerin, Bill just finished up his first season as the captain of the New York Islanders. But Marty Guerin, a rookie out of Miami (Ohio) is proving to be a valuable asset to the South Carolina Stingrays this season. He now leads the ECHL with 9 goals during the post-season thanks to a hat trick in the 'Rays 5-2 win over the Columbia Inferno in game 2.

Andrew Gordon and Patrick McNeill also made their series debuts Tuesday night and both made an instant impact. Gordon got the scoring started with a short-handed goal 5:10 into the 1st period. Then after the Stingrays squandered a 2-0 lead, Gordon started what ended up being the key play of the game just 2:26 into the final period. He created a turnover in his own end thanks to an excellent lift check, then provided the outlet pass to Stephen Werner that send the 'Rays on a two-on-one break. Werner then found Guerin who beat Inferno goaltender Todd Ford for his second goal of the night. That goal ended up being the game-winner.

Patrick McNeill also added an assist on Travis Morin's power play goal that gave the Stingrays a 4-2 lead. The goal was Morin's 7th of the post-season putting him in second place in the ECHL behind his teammate Guerin.

The Stingrays outshot the Inferno 40-17 during the game. Davis Parley stopped 15 shots on his way to his 5th victory of the playoffs.

The win gives South Carolina a commanding 2-0 series lead over the Inferno with game 3 now shifting to Columbia on Friday. The 'Rays are just one win away from the Conference Finals.

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