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SOUND TIGERS Sound Tigers blanked by Checkers

January 16, 2019

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte Checkers goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic made 20 saves to blank Bridgeport Sound Tigers (22-13-9-4) 1-0 Tuesday night at Bojangles Coliseum.

It was Bridgeport’s first 1-0 regulation loss since Feb. 2, 2018 and extended the club’s winless streak in regulation to seven games. Defenseman Chris Casto led the way with four shots for the Sound Tigers, but couldn’t beat Nedeljkovic, who won his league-leading 19th contest.

Aleksi Saarela scored the game’s only goal when he banked a shot off the right post and in past Christopher Gibson (10-6-4) at 9:30 of the opening period. Charlotte’s leading scorer Andrew Poturalski stole the puck behind the net and centered a pass for Saarela, who converted a quick shot for his 12th goal of the season.

The Checkers controlled the majority of the opening frame and outshot Bridgeport 11-5 when it was all said and done. The second period was closer, as the Sound Tigers held their opponent to just six shots, despite being shorthanded four times. Bridgeport finally sustained consistent offensive-zone pressure in the third and peppered Nedeljkovic with chances often, especially in the final two minutes, but couldn’t draw the contest even.

The Sound Tigers finished the game a perfect 6-for-6 on the penalty kill, but 0-for-4 on the power play, including two chances in the third period. Gibson made 25 saves on 26 shots in net for Bridgeport.

The Sound Tigers and Checkers play again Wednesday night at 7 at Bojangles Coliseum.

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