Tag Archives: South Carolina


Greenville Swamp RabbitsGreenville Road Warriors Rebrand to Swamp Rabbits

Team to build stronger ties with the Greenville community

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Swamp Rabbits

Greenville, S.C. – The Greenville Road Warriors are excited to announce that they will now be known as the Greenville Swamp Rabbits.

The Road Warriors came to Greenville in 2010 and were purchased by current owner, Fred Festa, chairman & CEO of W.R. Grace and Co., in 2012. Since their arrival, the team has been embraced by the Greenville community, making the rebranding a logical transition for the team. After signing a new five-year lease with the Bon Secours Wellness Arena in March 2015, the timing was ideal to strengthen the team’s ties to Greenville and the surrounding communities. The Swamp Rabbits represent a piece of Greenville history that not only pays homage to the legacy of the historic train line, but also provides a brand that better appeals to fans of all ages.

First known as the Carolina, Knoxville and Western line, and later becoming the Greenville and Northern railroad, the intent of the railroad was to connect Greenville with the rich coal fields of Tennessee, providing the Carolinas with a direct line over the mountains and access to cheaper coal. The railroad received its nickname, the “Swamp Rabbit” by locals who would use the freight train as a means of transportation to picnic in northern Greenville County. Completion of the rail line proved to be more of a financial commitment than expected, leaving the project at a halt near the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Today you can find this railroad marker located beside the “Swamp Rabbit” Pedestrian Bridge, which crosses over the Reedy River just off of South Main Street.

“After much thought and consideration, we determined that we wanted our new identity to honor a piece of Greenville’s history while also being relevant within the community today” said Fred Festa, owner of the Swamp Rabbits. “Several factors were taken into account when deciding on what that representation would be. Ultimately, we selected the Swamp Rabbits because the name holds dear to a variety of residents, businesses, popular recreational areas and the historic landmark, the Swamp Rabbit railroad, dating back the 1920s in Greenville.”

“To be able to embody a part of Greenville’s past and present via the team’s identity is an incredible feeling,” said Chris Lewis, general manager of the Greenville Swamp Rabbits. “We think the Swamp Rabbits will symbolize the competitive spirit of our players and the vibrancy of the community on the ice and off. We want our brand to best reflect what a night out at a hockey game is all about, which is fun and excitement for the entire community.”

On Friday, October 23rd at 7:00pm, the Swamp Rabbits will face off against the South Carolina Stingrays in the season’s first home game. Season ticket packages are on sale for the 2015-16 season and are available for purchase on the team’s website, Swamprabbits.com.

The Swamp Rabbits are members of the ECHL, the nation’s premier “AA” hockey league, and are affiliated with the NHL’s New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack. All home games are played at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena located at 650 N. Academy Street in downtown Greenville. For more information on the team, or to purchase tickets, visit Swamprabbits.com.


gerry-150x130BY: Gerry Cantlon, Howlings


The evisceration and the emasculation of the AHL is complete.

Confirmation of all that was whispered about a few months ago for next year, not only about having one division, the newly created Pacific Division, but their playing only 68 games while the rest of the league will play 76, has all happened. Couple that with the new bizarre percentage-points-based playoff system that’s been spawned because of it.

You may need a degree in trigonometry to figure out how the AHL playoff races are going to be figured out next spring. Continue reading



Executive Vice President Chris Lewis discusses the team’s productive offseason


BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Road Warriors

Greenville, SC It’s been nearly 70 days since the Greenville Road Warriors’ 2014-15 season came to a close, and exactly nine weeks since the search for a new head coach began.

Those events have led to a very busy and unique offseason for Executive Vice President and General Manager Chris Lewis and the rest of the team’s front office. Along with the search process, the club has been working non-stop this spring attaining new season ticket holders and corporate partners, and continuing to keep the team visible in the Greenville community and beyond.

So where do the Road Warriors currently stand? First, the ongoing hunt for a new head coach.

“We’ve entered the home stretch of our search process and expect to have an announcement after the league meetings in the near future,” Lewis said. “We had dozens of applicants and conversations, and formally interviewed more than a dozen candidates who brought experience from all levels of pro hockey as well as NCAA, CIS (Canadian college hockey), U.S. Junior A and Canadian Major Junior teams.”

Lewis continued, “The candidate pool has been extremely strong.”

The ECHL Marketing Meetings will take place next week in Las Vegas, so it’s realistic the team could make an announcement in the near future.

“We’re taking every step possible to ensure we make the right choice and find the best fit,” Lewis expanded. “Our affiliates in New York and Hartford have each contributed to the search process. We want there to be a strong relationship and synergy from both the player development perspective and the communication perspective between our coach and the personnel in New York and Hartford. Both the Rangers and Hartford have conveyed that it is important we get the right coach for our organization and community.”

While the search process continues to be the most talked about item this spring, it is not the team’s only order of business. Increasing season ticket and sponsorship sales have also been a high priority for the Road Warriors’ front office since the 2014-15 campaign ended on April 11th.

“We’ve been having a good offseason and are currently tracking ahead of this time period last year for season ticket sales,” Lewis said. “Our sales team has been doing a great job of having conversations, and getting people and businesses excited for hockey and to be a part of the great entertainment experience that games at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena provide.”

In addition, fans on the Road Warriors’ Official Facebook and Twitter pages may have noticed a steady flow of new corporate partners that have signed on as well.

“Sponsorship is another area where we are having some great conversations and have been able to introduce some new partners to the mix,” Lewis continued. “We will continue to convey the vision for building the organization into a well-integrated community entity that will be entertaining fans for the next five years and beyond. We are very excited to welcome back partners such as Bon Secours St. Francis Health System, Sandlapper Securities and the Hilton Greenville, as well as welcome our new partners to the mix.”

Finally, the Road Warriors have made a concerted effort this offseason to continue their visibility and support in the Greenville community. Nearly a dozen appearances with Rowdy, the Road Warriors’ mascot, and the team’s front office have been scheduled for the coming months, including 5k runs at Furman University and downtown Greenville, an ice cream social at the Greenville Zoo this Saturday, a Road Warriors’ night with the Carolina Cobras in July and more.

“Staying involved in the community is extremely important to us,” Lewis said. “We have been active at a variety of events so far this offseason and will be continuing that involvement as we move through the summer.”

The club will also announce the date(s) and time(s) for its third annual Hockey Demo Day in the next few weeks.

Follow: Keep up with the Road Warriors throughout the off-season and interact with other fans on the Official Road Warriors Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram pages.

Ticket plans for the Road Warriors’ sixth season in the Upstate are available now and start as low as $81! Call an Account Executive today at 864-674-PUCK or CLICK HERE to secure your seats!


south-carolina-stingrays_thumb3      VERSUS      greenville-road-warriors_thumb16


Krogh scores only goal for Greenville as South Carolina wins 16th straight game

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Road Warriors 

Greenville, SCThe Greenville Road Warriors (31-24-3), proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, surrendered a pair of goals in the second period on Sunday, which proved to be the difference in a 3-1 setback to the South Carolina Stingrays (34-18-7) at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena.

Defenseman Devon Krogh scored Greenville’s only goal midway through the first period, while South Carolina held a two-goal advantage through the final 26:14 to earn its franchise record 16th straight victory. In addition, the Stingrays’ winning streak became the second-longest streak in ECHL history, just one behind the Cincinnati Cyclones 17-game winning streak from Jan. 13, 2008 through Feb. 29, 2008.

Despite the loss, the Road Warriors continue to sit fourth in the East Division, three points ahead of the Elmira Jackals for the final playoff spot. Sunday’s contest completed the season-series between Greenville and South Carolina with the Stingrays taking 10 of the 14 meetings.

BOX SCORE Continue reading


greenville-road-warriors_thumb16      VERSUS      Wheeling Nailers


Greenville tops Wheeling 4-2 in rescheduled contest from Sunday

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Road Warriors

Wheeling, WVThe Greenville Road Warriors (31-22-3), proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, scored four unanswered goals on Monday, led by Andrew Himelson’s second career two-goal performance, to beat the Wheeling Nailers 4-2 at WesBanco Arena.

The Road Warriors didn’t grab the lead until less than five minutes to play in the third period when Michael St. Croix scored the game-winner.

With the victory, Greenville separated itself from Elmira by three points for the final playoff spot in the East Division. In addition, the Road Warriors improved to 15-13-3 on the road this season and concluded the season-series 4-1-0 against Wheeling.

BOX SCORE Continue reading


greenville-road-warriors_thumb16KELLY CUP TO APPEAR DURING “TRUE BLUE WEEKEND”

ECHL Founding Father Patrick J. Kelly will also be on hand Saturday, March 7th

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Rd Warriors

Greenville, SC – The Greenville Road Warriors, proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, are excited to announce the prestigious Kelly Cup championship trophy will make an appearance at the Road Warriors’ game on Saturday, March 7th as part of “True Blue Weekend.”

In addition, Patrick J. Kelly, a founding father of the ECHL and its first commissioner, will be on hand to meet fans, sign autographs and take pictures throughout the contest on the Bon Secours Wellness Arena concourse.  Continue reading


greenville-road-warriors_thumb16      VERSUS     south-carolina-stingrays_thumb3


Stingrays snap Road Warriors’ win streak on Saturday

BY: Alan Fuehring, Greenville Road Warriors 

North Charleston, SCJosh Nicholls scored twice in the opening six minutes on Saturday, but the Greenville Road Warriors (28-20-3), proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Rangers and the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, surrounded five unanswered goals in a 5-2 setback against the South Carolina Stingrays at the North Charleston Coliseum.

The loss snapped Greenville’s three-game win streak and dropped the club to 12-11-3 away from the Bon Secours Wellness Arena this season. In addition, it was the 11th consecutive head-to-head contest that the Stingrays have earned at least one point against the Warriors (8-0-3).

BOX SCORE Continue reading