Although Tyler Murovich extended his home point streak to 11 games with an early goal, the Atlanta offense could not get anything else going as the Gladiators fell to the South Carolina Stingrays by a score of 3-1 at the Infinite Energy Arena on Wednesday night.
South Carolina would open the game's scoring with a tally at the 18:12 mark of the first period. After the original shot went wide of the net, Scott Tanski was able to bat the puck out of mid-air on the rebound to put the Stingrays ahead 1-0. Both Joey Leach and Andrew Cherniwchan were credited with an assist on the sixth-year-pro’s 11th goal of the season.
Atlanta would then come back with a quick response to tie the game at 1-1 just :34 seconds of playing time later. Tyler Shiplo kept the puck in the zone for the Gladiators and found Shane Bakker open in the far-side slot. The forward then faked a shot and instead passed to Murovich, who slid the puck into the open for his 22nd tally of the season. The notch moved the Pittsburgh native's home point streak to 11 games, the longest of its kind currently ongoing in the ECHL.
The Stingrays then regained their lead 2:44 into the second period. Joe Devin collected the puck in his offensive zone and spun a pass to Derek Arnold in the low slot. The UMass-Lowell product then wristed a shot that beat Atlanta goalie, Dan Vladar, on the blocker side for his 15th goal of the year. Cherniwchan doubled his point total for the game with the secondary helper on the play.
The visitors then doubled their lead to 3-1 at the 7:17 mark of the third frame. After Tanksi corralled the puck behind the net in his offensive zone, he rolled a pass along the boards to Chernwichan. There, the 5-foot-11 forward tossed a saucer pass to Wade Epp at the point, who then lifted a wrist shot over the pad of Vladar for his second goal of the year.
The loss on home ice dropped Atlanta to 26-36-6-2 and kept the Gladiators in sixth in the South Division with 60 points. Meanwhile, South Carolina increased their season total in points to 80, which left the Stingrays in fourth in the division with a record of 38-28-3-1.