The Checkers were looking to get back in the win column after a disappointing loss to the San Antonio Rampage on Friday. They did just that, defeating the Rampage 3-0 on Saturday.
Goalie Rob Madore continued an impressive start to his AHL career with a 44-save shutout, his first in the leauge, as the Checkers topped the San Antonio Rampage by a 3-0 score on Saturday night. Thanks to his efforts, Charlotte recorded the win despite being outshot 44-18.
Beau Schmitz, Zach Boychuk and Brody Sutter scored goals for Charlotte, which avenged a 5-2 loss to the Rampage on Friday.
Prior to Saturday, no Checkers goalie had ever recorded a shutout with as many saves as Madore’s 44. In his first five AHL appearances, the rookie now has a 1.50 goals-against average and .960 save percentage, having recorded three wins with 37 or more saves.
While the second period actually saw the Checkers out-shoot San Antonio by one, the others featured a heavy advantage for the visitors, who enjoyed a 15-3 margin in the first period and a 20-5 mark in the third. However, Madore, the Checkers’ fourth-string goaltender entering the season, was up to the task, with his team winning for the fourth time in its last six games.
Schmitz, a defenseman who began the season with the ECHL’s Florida Everblades, went against the tide in that lopsided first period with his fourth goal of the season, part of a two-point effort. The rookie, who finished a beautifully-executed, three-on-two break with two players recently back from the NHL – Boychuk and Tim Wallace, now has eight points in 13 career AHL games, including three separate multi-point games.
Boychuk, who scored his 19th goal of the season in the second period, now has three goals in four games since returning from a two-month NHL stint across three different teams. Wallace, who had been gone for roughly the same amount of time with the parent Carolina Hurricanes, recorded two assists in his second game back.
Charlotte’s final goal came off the stick of Brody Sutter, who scored less than a minute after Boychuk to put his team up 3-0. He posted a Gordie Howe Hat Trick over the course of the weekend, having recorded an assist and a fight on Friday.
The Checkers concluded their eight-game season series with San Antonio with a record of 5-3-0. They continue their seven-game home stand with a back-to-back set against the Milwaukee Admirals, one of a handful of teams chasing them or a playoff spot, on Saturday and Sunday.
NOTES: The 44 shots were the third-most the Checkers have allowed this season and the second time they have allowed at least 44 in their last four games … Marc-Andre Gragnani, another player to return from a long absence this weekend, assisted on Boychuk’s goal … Schmitz was scoreless in 50 ECHL games prior to his most recent recall on March 10. Since then, he has scored his first four AHL goals.