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Game Preview: Solar Bears vs. Stingrays - Oct. 27, 2016

Thursday, October 27th
Game Preview: Solar Bears vs. Stingrays - Oct. 27, 2016

Solar Bears Game 2 • Home Game 2 • ECHL Game 58

WHO: Orlando Solar Bears (0-1-0-0) vs. South Carolina Stingrays (0-1-1-0)VENUE: ARS.com Rink at Amway Center, Orlando, Fla.DATE: Thursday, Oct. 27, 7 p.m.WATCH: ECHL.TVLISTEN: OSBN on MixlrTICKETS: CLICK HERE

TONIGHT:The Orlando Solar Bears face their South Division rivals, the South Carolina Stingrays. Both teams are seeking their first victory of the 2016-17 season, and have each played the fewest games among South Division teams. It will be the first game for the Solar Bears against new Stingrays head coach Ryan Warsofsky, who was elevated to the position this summer to replace longtime South Carolina bench boss Spencer Carberry.

RETURNING WEAPONS:Orlando has the benefit of having a number of returning players on its roster who performed well against South Carolina last season. Three of those players tied for the team lead in scoring against the Stingrays with five points: Brett Findlay (4 GP, led team with three goals), Eric Faille (8 GP) and T.J. Foster (led Orlando with four assists).

STRONG STARTS VITAL:If last Saturday’s game is to serve as an indication, how the team fares in the game’s first 20 minutes will continue to be a statistic to monitor this season. Last season, Orlando was a dominant 23-1-1-0 if it held the lead following the opening period; the Solar Bears were 10-29-3-5 if they did not establish a lead by the end of the first frame. Meanwhile, South Carolina managed to avoid conceding defeat frequently if the team did not have the lead after the first 20 minutes, as they had an above-.500 record when tied and a respectable .425 win percentage when trailing. Scoring first hasn’t necessarily worked for either team yet this season – both teams have scored first in one game so far this season, and both teams subsequently suffered a loss in regulation.

MASSA MAGIC:Should Ryan Massa get the start against the Stingrays, it will be only the goaltender’s second time in his career that he has faced South Carolina. Rob Madore manned the net for the first seven games of the 2015-16 series, before Massa received the nod in goal in Orlando’s thrilling 5-4 overtime victory at the North Charleston Coliseum on April 2, in which Massa recorded a .909 save percentage in the decision.

HEAD TO HEADOverall: 0-0-0-0Home: 0-0-0-0Road: 0-0-0-02015-16 Overall: 2-5-0-12015-16 Home: 0-4-0-02015-16 Away: 2-1-0-1Last 5 Years: 13-19-3-2Last 5 Years Home: 5-11-2-1Last 5 Years Away: 8-8-1-1

LEADERSPoints: Brouillard – 2Goals: Multiple – 1Assists: Multiple – 1+/-: Brouillard – +2PIM: Multiple – 2SOG: Multiple – 4

BEAR TRACKER

  • Baier & Findlay: Need five goals to pass Mickey Lang (32) for fourth in team history
  • Manderson: Needs two points to pass Mike Ullrich (67) for fifth in team history
  • Massa: Next win will be 20th of pro career
  • McInnis: Next game moves him past Jacob Cepis (107) for fifth most games played in team history
  • Montgomery: Next game is 150th pro game

AFFILIATE NOTES: The Toronto Marlies are idle today after coming away with their third straight victory following a 4-3 overtime win over the Providence Bruins on Wednesday. The Toronto Maple Leafs fell to the Tampa Bay Lightning by a 7-3 score on Tuesday, and host the Florida Panthers tonight at 7:30 p.m. at Air Canada Centre.

NEXT GAME:Solar Bears host Atlanta Gladiators on Friday, Oct. 28 at 7 p.m. Click here to purchase tickets.

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