Swamp Rabbits Score 4, Fall In Third Period In Toledo
Greenville gets out to early lead, but ECHL leading Walleye battle back to score five
BY: Brian Tosti, Greenville Swamp Rabbits
Toledo, OH – The Greenville Swamp Rabbits (4-5-2-0), proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, led the Toledo Walleye (13-3-0-0) into the third period, but could not hold off a late charge from the Western Conference leaders, falling 5-4. Greenville tied a season-high goal total in the loss, netting four goals before the midway point of the game.
The Swamp Rabbits took a quick lead in the first period less than seven minutes in. Tyler Brown fed Tommy Thompson down the ice for a small breakaway on Cal Heeter where he roofed the puck over the shoulder of the Walleye netminder. A minute later, the Swamp Rabbits cashed in again. A mad scramble in front of the net produced a rebound to the left side of the crease. Adam Chapie tucked his first professional goal of the season under the crossbar to give Greenville the 2-0 advantage. Toledo bounced back on a turnover two minutes later to cut the lead in half.
Michael Joly made his Swamp Rabbits debut tonight and made the best of his first ECHL game. The rookie scored his first professional goal as well to regain Greenville’s two-goal lead. On a long pass from Angelo Miceli, Joly toe-dragged a shot around the defender before shooting and following up his own rebound with less than two minutes left in the first period. At the break, the Swamp Rabbits led 3-1 on 11 shots and Mackenzie Skapski went to the dressing room with 12 saves.
The goaltender would only see four more minutes of action as Tyson Spink barreled to the net and ran down the third-year pro. He would leave the game with 13 saves to his credit and not return. Jeff Malcolm entered the action and saw a game-high 15 shots in his second-period relief and ended the game with 20 saves.
Tyler Brown helped take the load off for Greenville, as he netted his first goal this season 7:36 into the middle stanza. The alternate captain fed off a rebound from Spiro Goulakos’ shot from the blue line to give the Swamp Rabbits the 4-1 advantage. Brown earned a multi-point performance for the second straight game and fifth point in four games.
The Walleye struck after the Swamp Rabbits killed off a 5-on-3 power play. Toledo’s power play was one of two that the team scored on the man advantage in the final two periods. At the final intermission, Greenville held the two-goal lead over the most prolific offense in the ECHL.
Toledo tallied three goals in the first ten minutes of the third period with Dane Walters taking home the game-winning goal at the nine-minute mark. Shane Berschbach earned the top performance with three assists and Heeter made 26 saves in the win. The Walleye have now won their last five games after scoring four unanswered to earn the victory.
Greenville continues their busy week as they prepare for a three in three. The weekend begins Friday in Kalamazoo, MI against the Wings before they travel to Wheeling, WV to face the Nailers on Saturday and Sunday. By the end of the weekend, the Swamp Rabbits will have played 11 of 15 games away from home.
TEDDY BEAR TOSS / SING FOR SANTA | Friday, December 2 | 7:00 p.m.: The Swamp Rabbits’ annual Teddy Bear Toss presented by Bon Secours St. Francis Health System is back for the 7th season! Fans are encouraged to bring new stuffed animals to the game and after the Swamp Rabbits score their first goal, throw the furry friends over the glass onto the Sandlapper Securities Rink! All stuffed animals will be collected and donated to the U.S. Marines’ Toys For Tots program. Local Elementary and Middle School students will put fans in the holiday spirit by singing everyone’s favorite Christmas and holiday themed songs throughout the game as they Sing for Santa! Get an early start on the holidays by bringing a group to the Well or grab a Bon Secours Family Fun Pack for only $60. For more information call (867) 674-PUCK or visit SwampRabbits.com.
SUPERHERO / PRINCESS NIGHT | Saturday, December 3 | 7:00 p.m.: Come down to the Well and meet with your favorite superheroes or Disney princesses throughout the Swamp Rabbits game versus the South Carolina Stingrays! Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Black Widow, Captain America, and Spiderman will all be on hand for autographs, pictures, and to cheer on the Swamp Rabbits! In addition, the Swamp Rabbits will remember the Upstate’s own Superhero, Jacob Hall with a special Chuck-a-Carrot promotion to benefit a charity designated by the Hall family. Fans are encouraged to dress as superhero’s, help a great cause, and have a SUPER night!
Get Social: Follow the Swamp Rabbits all season long and get behind-the-scenes coverage like never before on the team’s official Facebook and Twitter pages. Download the Swamp Rabbits app from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store for up to date information right in the palm of your hand.
Ticket packages and group rates for the 2016-17 season are available now! Contact a Swamp Rabbits Account Executive at 864-674-PUCK (7825) for more information and to secure your seats today! Get the latest Swamp Rabbits gear by visiting the “Hop Shop” online at SwampRabbits.com/shop to browse the full collection of fan wear and novelties!