January has finally brought the Charlotte Checkers a string of success, as the team has won four of their past five games and three straight overall. Charlotte now sits seventh in the Central Division and 27th overall.
The Checkers are in the midst of an eight game homestand. Bojangles Coliseum has treated the Checkers well this season as they are 10-4 at home. A good showing through the remaining of the six games of their homestand can bring confidence to the team moving forward as they push for a playoff spot.
The Checkers began their three game win streak by topping the Milwaukee Admirals 5-1 on the road. The Checkers’ scoring came from five different goal scorers with Lucas Wallmark scoring a goal and adding two assists for a career-high three points. C.J. Motte got the start in goal for the Checkers and stopped 30 shots.
The Checkers returned home to play a pair of games against the Cleveland Monsters. The first game was a thriller as the Checkers edged the Monsters 3-2 in a game which went to a shootout. Valentin Zykov scored the game-clinching goal in the shootout and Andrew Poturalski and Patrick Brown scored goals in regulation. Alex Nedeljkovic had the best game of his young career as he stopped a career high 42 shots. Nedeljkovic had been recently demoted to the Florida Everblades before being recalled to Charlotte again.
The Checkers also won the second against the Monsters by a score of 5-3. The Monsters quickly put themselves up 3-0 with a pair of goals in the first period and another tally in the second period. The Checkers came roaring back late in the second period with goals from Phil Di Guiseppe and Andrej Nestrasil. Lucas Wallmark tied the game at three and Sergey Tolchinsky would pot the game-winner and his sixth goal of the season. Wallmark would add an empty netter with one second remaining to secure the Checkers win and a sweep over the defending Calder Cup champions.
The team will remain at home for the next six games facing off against the Milwaukee Admirals, Tucson Roadrunners and the Manitoba Moose before heading back on the road on February 3rd.
Since Last We Met:
- January 3: Chicago 4, Checkers 2
- January 6: Checkers 2, Grand Rapids 1
- January 7: Chicago 5, Checkers 2
- January 10: Checkers 5, Milwaukee 1
- January 13: Checkers 3, Cleveland 2 (SO)
- January 14: Checkers 5, Cleveland 3
Next Up for the Checkers: (16-20-2-0, 34 points, 7th Central Div.)
- January 17 and 18: home vs. Milwaukee
- January 21 and 22: home vs. Tucson
- January 27 and 28: home vs. Manitoba