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Charlotte Checkers vs. Binghamton Devils: Gauthier, Checkers Top Devils 4-2

Julien Gauthier had his best game of the season and the Checkers beat the Devils to stay hot.

Jacob Kupferman/Charlotte Checkers

The Charlotte Checkers won their fifth game in their last six after beating the Binghamton Devils 4-2 on Friday night.

Charlotte got off to a hot start in the first period with a quick strike less than a minute in. Trevor Carrick deposited a Nick Schilkey centering pass to give the Checkers the lead. Charlotte pushed hard and began peppering Devils goalie Evan Cormier with shots. Andrew Poturalski pushed into the offensive zone early in the first period for a breakaway but was denied by Cormier.

Charlotte got a power play around the 13 minute mark. A bad pinch by a defenseman resulted in a Devils 2-on-1 and Eric Tangradi fired it past Alex Nedeljkovic for a shorthanded goal. The Devils sprung another 2-on-1 shorthanded on another Checkers power play but Nedeljkovic stopped the shot.

With around seven minutes to go in the period, Andrew Poturalski lifted a shot point blank on Cormier but he flashed the glove and snared it. Charlotte outshot the Devils 13-5 in the first period.

The second period began with back and forth chances between the teams. Julien Gauthier rushed in with a controlled zone entry and fired a shot but it was stopped. Newly-acquired Tomas Jurco dangled his way into the offensive zone with 14 minutes to go in the period and fired a shot low but it was stopped.

Trevor Carrick fired a shot midway through the period and it hit off of Patrick Brown’s body and into the back of the net to break the tie. Less than a minute later, Clark Bishop dished a pass to Julien Gauthier and Gauthier fired it into the back of the net to give the Checkers the 3-1 lead.

In the third, the Devils pushed hard to try to get back into the game but Nedeljkovic made some key saves early. Brett Seney pulled the Devils within one with 14 minutes after firing a wrist shot past Nedeljkovic on a breakaway. Dennis Robertson stopped the Devils from tying it up with around ten minutes to go after swatting a puck off the goal line after it trickled through Nedeljkovic. The Devils pushed hard late but were forced to pull their goalie late and Aleksi Saarela scored the empty netter to give the Checkers the win.

Charlotte and Binghamton play each other again in Charlotte on Saturday at 6 p.m.