Posting a strong week before the holiday break, the Checkers won three of four games. Finally starting to establish some positive momentum, Charlotte moved up to 6th in the Atlantic Division, but still has a hill to climb in the new year to make a run at a playoff spot.
The Checkers dominated the Hartford Wolf Pack in their first two games of the week, winning 6-3 and 7-1 respectively. In the first game, Hartford got out to an early 1-0 but Charlotte came back in full force, rambling off five goals in a row. Julien Gauthier led the way with two goals and an assist, while Alex Nedeljkovic stopped 19 of 22 shots in the win.
In game two against Hartford, Charlotte’s offense was on full display with all different goal scorers in the 7-1 win. Gauthier and Janne Kuokkanen each had multi-point games and Jake Bean had a three assist game. In net, Anton Forsberg put on a 28-save performance.
Later in the week, Charlotte dropped a 3-2 decision to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Lehigh jumped out to a 3-0 lead early, and the Checkers fought back but a late third period rally fell just short. Max McCormick continued his strong play with another goal and Gustav Forsling had a pair of helpers.
In the last game of the week, Charlotte topped Lehigh Valley 4-2. The Phantoms got out to an early first period lead but a surge by the Checkers in the second and third periods earned them the win. Chase Priskie and Steven Lorentz each had a goal and an assist in the win and Nedeljkovic stopped 26 shots.
Swamp Rabbits Recap
Greenville split their pair of games before the holiday break and have remained afloat in the South Division. The Swamp Rabbits topped the Florida Everblades 5-3 but fell the following day to the Everblades 5-2. Greenville has fallen into a semi-slump lately, going 4-6 in their last ten games to drop to .500 overall and a tie for third in the division. They face a packed schedule with seven games in the span of 10 days, five of which are at home, beginning with a set of three straight games that starts with a back-to-back tomorrow and Saturday against Norfolk.