Swamp Rabbits Weekly #1 (2019-20)
It had been six years since the Greenville Swamp Rabbits tasted victory on opening night. Heading into the 2019-20 season, Greenville saw a top-notch first test against the Jacksonville Icemen, a playoff team from a year ago. That game had everything: lead changes, dramatic plot twists, and eventually, victory.
Thanks to an overtime tally by Nathan Perkovich, which capped off an outstanding night with four points, the Swamp Rabbits left Jacksonville in the win column. The Icemen had dominated the season series last year. A retooled Swamp Rabbits club found a way to win a game that turned on them.
Jacksonville responded to each goal by Roman Ammirato with a goal of their own, and eventually took the lead early in the third period on a goal by Emerson Clark. The Swamp Rabbits only had one win last season when trailing in the third period. This season, they got one right off the bat, thanks in part to a shorthanded goal by Cédric Lacroix to tie the score at three.
Callum Booth, making his first start in a Greenville uniform, helped the Swamp Rabbits pick up the win with 32 saves, including a game-saving tally late in the third period on a defensive zone breakdown.
With one game in the books, this upcoming weekend gives Greenville three opportunities against South Division foes, including a much-anticipated rematch against Jacksonville on Friday for Opening Night.
10/12 at Jacksonville Icemen - 4-3 W
OPENING NIGHT, PRESENTED BY BON SECOURS - FRIDAY, OCTOBER 18 at 7:00 p.m.
Greenville Swamp Rabbits vs. Jacksonville Icemen
Poster giveaway, sponsored by Bon Secours
Saturday, October 19 at 7:00 p.m.
Greenville Swamp Rabbits at Atlanta Gladiators
Listen - Watch
POSTGAME SKATE WITH THE PLAYERS - SUNDAY, OCTOBER 20 at 3:05 p.m.
Greenville Swamp Rabbits vs. Atlanta Gladiators
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Nathan Perkovich - 1 GP | 1 G - 3 A - 4 P
Perkovich blocked shots, drew four penalties, picked up three assists, two primary, and the game-winning goal on Saturday night. All in all, an incredible night for the veteran forward. No player in the ECHL scored four points in their first game of the season. His contributions in all facets of the game helped the Swamp Rabbits to victory, with a hand in all four goals scored by Greenville.
The last time a Greenville hockey club won an opening game was on October 18, 2013 against the Gwinnett Gladiators. Goaltender Carsen Chubak, who only played two games for the Road Warriors, picked up the win with 20 saves in a 5-3 win.
Roman Ammirato struck twice in Saturday's game in Jacksonville. His first was the 20th goal of his ECHL career. He led the squad with five shots on goal.
Will Lochead picked up an assist in his professional debut. He was only a 0.19 points-per-game player in his junior career.
The Swamp Rabbits will take on two more South Division opponents this weekend with games against the Icemen and the Atlanta Gladiators.
Forward Cliff Pu was re-called by the Springfield Thunderbirds of the AHL.
SOUTH DIVISION STANDINGS
Florida Everblades (2-0-0) - 4 pts
South Carolina Stingrays (1-0-0) - 2 pts
Greenville Swamp Rabbits (1-0-0) - 2 pts
Jacksonville Icemen (0-0-1) - 1 pts
Atlanta Gladiators (0-0-0) - 0 pts
Orlando Solar Bears (0-1-0) - 0 pts
Norfolk Admirals (0-2-0) - 0 pts
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