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Special Teams Help Checkers Crush Crunch 4-1

October 13, 2018 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Charlotte Checkers News Release

SYRACUSE, NY - The Checkers continued their red-hot start to the season by defeating the Syracuse Crunch 4-1 to move to a perfect 4-0-0, the in the AHL franchise's history.

After a back-and-forth contest the night before in Utica, the Checkers left no doubt against the Crunch. Julien Gauthier opened the scoring within the first five minutes of play before Charlotte's special teams took over. Janne Kuokkanen and Clark Bishop each capitalized on man advantages to push the lead to 3-0 midway through regulation, then Patrick Brown finished off a shorthanded odd-man rush to give the Checkers a sizable lead through 40 minutes of play.

The Crunch were finally able to break through early in the third, but it would be too little, too late. Alex Nedeljkovic stopped 34 of the 35 shots he faced to earn his fourth victory this season and the Checkers rolled their way to an undefeated start.

Notes

The Checkers started 4-0-0 for the first time in their nine AHL seasons. All four games took place on the road ... Charlotte was one of three teams in the AHL with a perfect record (Iowa and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton are both 3-0-0) ... Andrew Poturalski picked up an assist to extend his point streak to four games (2g, 5a). He is the only Checker to record at least one point in each game ... At the game's conclusion, Poturalski led the team and was tied for second in AHL scoring ... Goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic became the first AHL goaltender to record four victories. He also tied his season high with 34 saves ... The Checkers have scored at least four goals in each game. Their 18 goals rank second in the AHL in scoring behind Toronto (19) ... Charlotte went 2-for-4 on the power play. The team now leads the league with a 42.9 percent success rate on the man advantage ... The Checkers recorded their third shorthanded goal, tying them with Toronto for the league lead. They also killed all six Syracuse power plays ... Including Gauthier's attempt tonight, the Checkers have missed seven consecutive penalty shots. Their last penalty shot goal was scored by Ben Holmstrom on Nov. 29, 2014 ... Forward Spencer Smallman and defenseman Josiah Didier missed the game due to injury ... Defenseman Michael Fora was a healthy extra.

Up Next

With that four-game road swing in the rearview, the Checkers will return to Bojangles' Coliseum Friday for the season opener.


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