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Stingrays Claim Game 1 of the 2015 Kelly Cup Finals

by Joseph Zakrzewski / Washington Capitals

Allen, TX – Forward Wayne Simpson scored twice and forward Sean Dolan buried the game-winning goal shorthanded in the third period to send the South Carolina Stingrays (13-8) over the Allen Americans (12-7) 4-3 in Game 1 of the Kelly Cup Finals at the Allen Event Center Sunday evening. The Stingrays lead the best-of-seven series 1-0. With the win, the Stingrays have won each of their Game 1s of 2015 Kelly Cup Playoffs.

The Americans kicked off the scoring, but the Stingrays responded with a trio of tallies to take a 3-1 lead into the first intermission. Defenseman Trevor Ludwig put the Americans on the scoreboard 58 seconds into the contest slipping a shot along the goal line and under the right pad of Stingrays netminder Jeff Jakaitis (W, 21 saves on 24 shots). Stingrays team captain Andrew Rowe responded with his team-leading 12th goal at 3:30 beating the Americans defense and goaltender Riley Gill (L, 19 saves on 23) unassisted. Moments later, Simpson put the Stingrays in front tapping in a tic-tac-toe setup with defenseman Michal Cajkovsky and Rowe. Simpson answered again as defenseman Scott Ford found him off the left post for his 11th goal of the playoffs. Forward Derek DeBlois added the second assist.

Americans forward Gary Steffes capitalized on the power play at 14:23 of the middle stanza beating Jakaitis under the blocker to pull the contest within one. Early in the third period, the Americans tied the game up of a tally from forward Spence Asuchak at 1:43. With Rowe in the penalty box for interference, Dolan settled a pass from forward Patrick Gaul and slid in the game-winning marker shorthanded at 11:30. The Stingrays finished the game 0-for-2 on the power play while the Americans went 1-for-3.

The Stingrays battle the Americans in Game 2 of the 2015 Kelly Cup Finals on Tuesday, June 2 at 8:05 p.m. ET at the Allen Even Center in Allen Texas. Game 3 is Wednesday, June 3 at 8:05 ET at the Allen Event Center. The Stingrays host the Americans for Game 4 on Sunday, June 7 at 7:05 p.m. at the North Charleston Coliseum. If necessary, Game 5 is Tuesday, June 9 at 7:05 and Game 6 is Wednesday, June 10 at the Coliseum. Tickets for Game 4 are ON SALE NOW! Buy Tickets

Do not miss a second of the action! 2015-16 Stingrays Ticket Plans are on sale NOW! Save money off of box receive office prices and great benefits like FREE parking, Buddy Passes, discounts off of merchandise, advanced ticket purchases to North Charleston Coliseum and Performing Arts Center events and more! Click here to see all the benefits and options!

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