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South Carolina Stingrays

South Carolina Stingrays
2015–16 ECHL season
City North Charleston, South Carolina
League ECHL
Conference Eastern
Division South
Founded 1993 (1993)
Home arena North Charleston Coliseum
Colors Navy blue, red, white, silver
Owner(s) Anita Zucker
Greenwald Family
Head coach Spencer Carbery
Captain Andrew Rowe
Media The Post and Courier
WTMZ 910 AM (ESPN Radio)
WQSC 1340 AM
WQNT 1450 AM (Fox Sports Radio)
America One
Affiliates Washington Capitals (NHL)
Hershey Bears (AHL)
Regular season titles 1996–97
Division Championships 1994–95, 1996–97, 1997–98, 2000–01, 2013–14
Conference Championships 1996–97, 2000–01, 2008–09, 2014–15
Kelly Cups 1996–97, 2000–01, 2008–09

The South Carolina Stingrays are a professional minor league ice hockey team based in North Charleston, South Carolina. The Stingrays play in the South Division of the ECHL's Eastern Conference. They play their home games at the North Charleston Coliseum. The Carolina Ice Palace, also located in North Charleston, serves as a practice facility and backup arena for the Stingrays. Established in 1993, the team has been owned by a conglomerate of local business owners since 1995. The team was affiliated with the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League and the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League starting in 2004 and ending in July 2012 when the Capitals announced their affiliation with the ECHL's Reading Royals. On June 26, 2014, the Washington Capitals announced an affiliation agreement with the Stingrays for the 2014–15 season.[1]

The Stingrays are the first professional ice hockey team established in the state of South Carolina.[2] With the relocation of the Johnstown Chiefs to Greenville, South Carolina in 2010, the Stingrays became the oldest continuously operational ECHL franchise to remain in its founding city (the Wheeling Nailers have been in Wheeling since 1992 but are a relocated franchise).

The Stingrays have finished with the best record in the ECHL once, and qualified for the playoffs for every season except one. With Kelly Cup championships in 1997, 2001 and 2009, the Stingrays are tied with the Hampton Roads Admirals and the Alaska Aces for the record for most league championships. Twenty-two former Stingrays players have gone on to play in the National Hockey League with one (Rich Peverley) winning the Stanley Cup with the Boston Bruins in 2011.

The team developed a large fan base rapidly following its inception. During its first season (1993–94) the team boasted an average of 9,151 fans a game—one of the largest crowds in minor league hockey.[3] Recent years have seen a downward trend in attendance. During the 2011–12 season, the Stingrays averaged an all-time low 3,251 fans per game, though they rebounded in the 2012–13 season with an average 3,528 fans per game.[4]


  • Team history 1
    • Birth of a franchise 1.1
    • Rick Vaive era (1993–98) 1.2
    • Rick Adduono era (1998–2002) 1.3
    • Jason Fitzsimmons era (2002–07) 1.4
    • Jared Bednar era (2007–09) 1.5
    • Cail MacLean era (2009–11) 1.6
    • Spencer Carbery era (2011–present) 1.7
  • Team culture 2
    • Logos 2.1
    • Mascot 2.2
    • Media 2.3
    • Community Service 2.4
  • Recent seasons 3
  • Players 4
    • Current roster 4.1
    • Staff 4.2
    • Stingrays in the NHL 4.3
    • Retired numbers 4.4
    • ECHL Hall of Fame members 4.5
    • Stingrays Hall of Fame 4.6
  • ECHL team records 5
    • Regular season 5.1
    • Postseason 5.2
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Team history

Original South Carolina Stingrays logo: Red silhouette of the state of South Carolina with a white stingray superimposed. Stingray's blue tail is curled around a white hockey stick, with the words
Original Stingrays logo, used 1993–2000; revived for throwback third jerseys in 2011–12.

Birth of a franchise

The South Carolina Stingrays were founded in 1993 as an expansion team in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL). Its management team included Joseph Scanlon as president/CEO and retired National Hockey League (NHL) player Rick Vaive as head coach. The team was originally to be designated the South Carolina Sharks,[2] but eventually settled on the Stingrays name to avoid a copyright dispute with the NHL's San Jose Sharks.[5] In late 1993, Scanlon filed a lawsuit in a Canadian court in an attempt to wrest control of the team from its ownership group. He was replaced as president and CEO by retired NHL Hall of Fame member Marcel Dionne in December of that year. Dionne was accused of assault in February 1994 by Lynn Bernstein, an ally of Scanlon, over a dispute regarding the removal of advertising signs at the North Charleston Coliseum, but was later acquitted.[6] Following dismissal of Scanlon's lawsuit, the ECHL board of governors ended the power struggle when it approved the sale of the franchise from its Canadian ownership group to a local investment group led by Edwin Pearlstine, owner of Pearlstine Distribution, the local Budweiser distributor. The group also included Jerry and Anita Zucker, Harvey Nathan and Lynn Bernstein (owners of local restaurant Nathan's Deli), and the Greenwald family of Seabrook Island. Dionne remained the franchise's president and CEO.[7]

In early 1995, along with

League Championships
Preceded by
Richmond Renegades
Brabham Cup
Succeeded by
Louisiana IceGators
Preceded by
Charlotte Checkers
Kelly Cup
Succeeded by
Hampton Roads Admirals
Preceded by
Peoria Rivermen
Kelly Cup
Succeeded by
Greenville Grrrowl
Preceded by
Cincinnati Cyclones
Kelly Cup
Succeeded by
Cincinnati Cyclones
  • Official website of the South Carolina Stingrays
  • The Post & Courier Stingrays section
  • Official website of the North Charleston Coliseum

External links

  1. ^ "Capitals announce ECHL affiliation with Stingrays". Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  2. ^ a b S. 324 (1993-02-02). "A concurrent resolution to congratulate and welcome the South Carolina Sharks on their establishment as the first professional hockey team in South Carolina". South Carolina Senate. Retrieved 2010-11-09.
  3. ^ a b Stott, Jon C. (2006). Hockey Night in Dixie: Minor Pro Hockey in the American South. Heritage House Publishing Company Ltd. p. 70.  
  4. ^ "ECHL stats archive".  
  5. ^ Sapakoff, Gene (1994-12-23). "A team that the Stingrays can hate". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-09.
  6. ^ MacDougall, David (1994-12-09). "Stingrays chief acquitted in assault". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-09.
  7. ^ Namm, Keith (1995-03-21). "Local group approved to buy 'Rays HOMETOWN HOCKEY". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  8. ^ Namm, Keith (1995-03-08). "AHL has eye on Stingrays". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  9. ^ Namm, Keith (1995-03-21). "Stingrays will stay in ECHL". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  10. ^ Hartsell, Jeff (1995-06-08). "Rays' Dionne gone VAIVE TAKES OVER". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  11. ^ Namm, Keith (1994-12-07). "Stingrays take on familiar foe tonight". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  12. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1993–1994" (PDF).  
  13. ^ "1993–94 ECHL league leaders". Retrieved October 17, 2011. 
  14. ^ "1993–94 South Carolina Stingrays results and schedule". Retrieved October 17, 2011. 
  15. ^ Namm, Keith (1995-04-09). "Good Knight to Stingrays' season". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  16. ^ a b c Team Records. ECHL. Retrieved 2011-04-14.
  17. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1994–1995" (PDF).  
  18. ^ Namm, Keith (1996-04-14). "Checkers eliminate Stingrays". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  19. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1995–1996" (PDF).  
  20. ^ Namm, Keith (1997-03-07). "Brabham Cup just first step for Stingrays". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  21. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1996–1997" (PDF).  
  22. ^ "CCM U+ Most Vaulable Player award winners".  
  23. ^ "Playoff MVP winners".  
  24. ^ Sapakoff, Gene (1997-09-05). "Stingrays fined $50,000, ECHL executives feel $50,000 fine too lenient". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  25. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1997–1998" (PDF).  
  26. ^ Namm, Keith (1998-04-09), "Pride's goal in OT eliminates Stingrays". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  27. ^ Miller, Andrew (1998-09-04). "Rays name coach". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  28. ^ Staff reports (1998-10-07). "Fitzsimmons named assistant". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  29. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1998–1999" (PDF).  
  30. ^ a b c Team Postseason Records. ECHL. Retrieved 2011-04-14.
  31. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 1999–2000" (PDF).  
  32. ^ "East Coast Hockey League final official statistics — 2000–2001" (PDF).  
  33. ^ Miller, Andrew (2001-05-28). "ICE PRINCES Stingrays claim 2nd ECHL title". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  34. ^ Miller, Andrew (2002-04-24). "STINGRAYS FIRE COACH ADDUONO". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  35. ^ Miller, Andrew (2002-05-24). "Bednar steps into role of Stingrays' assistant". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  36. ^ Miller, Andrew (2004-08-12). "Rays sign affiliation deal with Capitals". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  37. ^ Miller, Andrew (2003-04-08). "Pee Dee finished Stingrays". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  38. ^ Miller, Andrew (2004-04-23). "Rays swept away". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  39. ^ Miller, Andrew (2005-04-19). "Stingrays stung in OT". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  40. ^ Miller, Andrew (2006-04-20). "Stingrays on ice". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-30.
  41. ^ Miller, Andrew (2007-04-07). "Stingrays miss playoffs for first time in 14 years". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  42. ^ Miller, Andrew (2007-04-17). "Stingrays coach to resign". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  43. ^ Miller, Andrew (2007-04-27). "Rays choose Bednar". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  44. ^ Miller, Andrew (2008-05-21). "A lot for us to be proud of". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  45. ^ Miller, Andrew (2009-6-07). "Rays of Joy". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  46. ^ Miller, Andrew (2009-07-01). "Bednar takes job in AHL". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  47. ^ Miller, Andrew (2010-06-07). "Bednar gets reins at Peoria of AHL". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  48. ^ Miller, Andrew (2009-07-02). "Reins change hands". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  49. ^ Miller, Andrew (2010-01-24). "Stingrays treated like royalty from 10,570 fans". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  50. ^ Miller, Andrew (2010-09-25)."Scherer returns to chase another title". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  51. ^ a b Miller, Andrew (2010-03-27)."Concannon named Stingrays president". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  52. ^ Miller, Andrew (2010-09-01). "Ex-Stingray Carbery now coach". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  53. ^ Miller, Andrew (2010-10-05). "Stingrays look to replicate '09 run". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  54. ^ Miller, Andrew (2011-04-12). "Consistently inconsistent: MacLean believes team has unfinished business after up-and-down season". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  55. ^ Miller, Andrew (2011-04-23). "Alumni game to raise money for Daubenspeck". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  56. ^ Staff report (2011-02-22). "Stingrays fundraising for Daubenspeck". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  57. ^ Press release (2011-04-25). "Alumni game raises over $20,000 for Daubenspeck". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  58. ^ Press release (2011-07-21). "Stingrays' MacLean accepts AHL position". ECHL. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  59. ^ Press release (2011-07-26). "Stingrays name Carbery sixth head coach in team history". ECHL. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  60. ^ Press release (September 19, 2011). "Stingrays name Bittner as assistant coach".  
  61. ^ "Future Stingrays' hall of famer reflects on career".  
  62. ^ Press release (October 2, 2011). "Nate Kiser to enter Stingrays Hall of Fame on opening night". Retrieved October 2, 2011. 
  63. ^ "Stingrays Sign Affiliation Agreement with Boston Bruins".  
  64. ^
  65. ^ "Capitals announce ECHL affiliation with Stingrays". Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  66. ^ Press release (2008-06-04). "Stingrays, North Charleston Coliseum Extend Lease; Team Unveils New Logo". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  67. ^ a b Minis, Wevonneda (1995-10-29). "Mascots pull in the business". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  68. ^ Miller, Andrew (2000-05-31). "Stingrays unveil meaner, leaner look for 'Cool Ray'". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  69. ^ Shumake, Janice (1995-04-20). "Dash to benefit humane society". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  70. ^ Mays, Dierdre (1995-06-22). "Auto engines to whine in fund-raiser race". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  71. ^ Danzell, Lindsey (2005-02-24). "KidsFair to feature fun, educational events". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  72. ^ Miller, Andrew (2008-03-13). "Rays looking for 2nd Place in South Division". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  73. ^ Press release (2009-10-22). "Stingrays Launch New Website". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  74. ^ Press release (2010-12-20). "Stingrays Bring Holiday Cheer to MUSC Children's Hospital". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2011-07-26.
  75. ^ Press release (2010-03-16). "Stingrays' Pink in the Rink raises over $40,000". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2011-04-11.
  76. ^ Press release (2011-03-02). "Fifth Annual Pink in the Rink raises over $46,000". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2011-04-11.
  77. ^ Press release (2012-02-28). "Pink in the Rink jersey auction helps fight breast cancer". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved 2012-04-02.
  78. ^ a b c "History of the Stingrays". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved July 3, 2012. 
  79. ^ "ECHL stats archive".  
  80. ^ accessdate = April 16, 2013 "Standings for the South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL" . 
  81. ^ "South Carolina Stingrays 2014-15 regular season".  
  82. ^ "South Carolina Stingrays". Retrieved 2014-01-06. 
  83. ^ " Front Office". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved October 12, 2012. 
  84. ^ " Hockey Staff". South Carolina Stingrays. Retrieved September 11, 2015. 
  85. ^ "ECHL alumni". ECHL. Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  86. ^ Clark, Brendan (2011-06-15)."Former Stingrays player hoists Stanley Cup". WCBD-TV. Retrieved 2011-06-16.
  87. ^ Press release (2009-01-20). "Coates is ECHL Hall of Fame Speaker". ECHL. Retrieved 2011-08-05.
  88. ^ Staff and wire reports (2012-01-19). "Ex-Ray Seitz joins ECHL hall". Post and Courier. Retrieved 2012-04-02.


Updated April 14, 2011.[16][30]

This is a list of ECHL records for which the Stingrays either hold or are tied for the top position. For all league records for the Stingrays, see List of South Carolina Stingrays seasons.

ECHL team records

  • 2003: Rick Vaive, Mark Bavis
  • 2004: Rob Concannon, Bret Marietti
  • 2005: Dave Seitz
  • 2006: Ed Courtenay
  • 2007: Kirk Daubenspeck
  • 2008: Brad Dexter
  • 2009: Jerry Zucker
  • 2010: Jason Fitzsimmons
  • 2011: Julie Thoennes (account executive)
  • 2012: Nate Kiser (inducted during 2011-12 season opener), Jared Bednar (inducted during regular ceremony)
  • 2013: Matt Scherer
  • 2014: Marty Clapton, Trevor Johnson
  • 2015: Travis Morin

Stingrays Hall of Fame

ECHL Hall of Fame members

  • Regular season statistics: 550 GP, 194 G, 287 A, 481 PTS, 1127 PIM.
  • Playoff statistics: 69 GP, 30 G, 32 A, 62 PTS, 129 PIM.

24 - Brett Marietti, a popular player and former captain, retired after the 2002–03 season. Team management promptly retired his jersey in 2003. Marietti's tenure as captain ranks among the longest in ECHL history for a player to captain a single team.

  • Regular season statistics: 489 GP, 217 G, 370 A, 587 PTS, 503 PIM.
  • Playoff Statistics: 58 GP, 29 G, 44 A, 73 PTS, 85 PIM.

14 - David Seitz, who played from 1996–2004 and was a popular forward on the franchise with team records in goals, assists, and points, including over 200 goals and 500 points overall, fifth on the ECHL's all-time assists list, and two ECHL Kelly Cups. Seitz's retirement, caused by an ECHL restriction on experienced players on a roster after the Stingrays signed players for a road trip, sent shockwaves through the community.

  • Regular season statistics: 87 GP, 30 G, 38 A, 68 PTS, 186 PIM.
  • Playoff statistics: 17 GP, 3 G, 7 A, 10 PTS, 34 PIM.

12 - Mark Bavis, who played from 1994–96 when the Stingrays were an affiliate of the Buffalo Sabres. Bavis, by then a Los Angeles Kings scout, was killed along with Kings Director of Professional Scouting Garnet Bailey on United Airlines Flight 175 when Al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked the airliner, and steered it towards the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. The Stingrays retired his jersey before the start of the 2001–02 season.

Updated August 5, 2011.[78]

Retired numbers

To date, twenty-two former Stingrays have played in the National Hockey League, and one, Rich Peverley, has won the Stanley Cup.[86]

Player Position Years with Stingrays NHL draft selection NHL team(s) (Years)
Michal Neuvirth G 2008–09 Washington Capitals, round 2, #34 overall, 2006 Washington Capitals (2008–14), Buffalo Sabres (2014–15), New York Islanders (2015-Present)
Stefan Della Rovere LW 2008–09 Washington Capitals, round 7, #204 overall, 2008 St. Louis Blues (2010–11)
James Reimer G 2008–09 Toronto Maple Leafs, round 4, #99 overall, 2006 Toronto Maple Leafs (2010–present)
Braden Holtby G 2009–10 Washington Capitals, round 4, #93 overall, 2008 Washington Capitals (2010–present)
Travis Morin C 2006–09 Washington Capitals, round 9, #263 overall, 2004 Dallas Stars (2010–present)
Updated January 14, 2014.[85]

This is a partial list of the last five Stingrays players to advance to the NHL. For the complete list of players and staff, see List of South Carolina Stingrays alumni in the NHL.

Stingrays in the NHL

Since Rick Adduono (1998), each Stingrays head coach (Jason Fitzsimmons, Jared Bednar, Cail MacLean and Spencer Carbery) has been the team's previous assistant and a former Stingrays player. Rob Concannon (named team president in 2010) played on the 1997 Kelly Cup team.[51]

Updated October 12, 2012.[83][84]


# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace Contract
10 Cameron, BrettBrett Cameron RW R 26 2015 Edmonton, Alberta Stingrays
13 Deblois, DerekDerek Deblois RW R 25 2014 Warwick, Rhode Island Stingrays
31 Dekanich, MarkMark Dekanich G L 30 2015 North Vancouver, British Columbia Bears
8 Devin, JoeJoe Devin (A) RW R 28 2015 Scituate, Massachusetts Stingrays
6 D'Agostino, NickNick D'Agostino D L 26 2015 Bolton, Ontario Stingrays
44 Ellis, BrendanBrendan Ellis D L 27 2014 Kelowna, British Columbia Stingrays
27 Epp, WadeWade Epp D L 27 2014 Chilliwack, British Columbia Stingrays
21 Fyten, AustinAustin Fyten (A) LW L 25 2015 Sundre, Alberta Bears
22 Gaul, PatrickPatrick Gaul (A) F L 26 2013 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Stingrays
51 Gillies, TrevorTrevor Gillies LW L 37 2015 Cambridge, Ontario Stingrays
26 Johnston, AndrewAndrew Johnston LW L 24 2015 Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Stingrays
5 Jones, NickNick Jones D R 26 2015 Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania Stingrays
29 Komm, BrandenBranden Komm G L 25 2015 Williamsville, New York Stingrays
16 Kraemer, KyleKyle Kraemer F R 31 2015 St. Louis, Missouri Stingrays
7 Leach, JoeyJoey Leach D L 24 2015 Wadena, Saskatchewan Bears
2 Lewington, TylerTyler Lewington D R 21 2015 Edmonton, Alberta Capitals
25 Mulvey, ColinColin Mulvey F R 25 2015 Worcester, Massachusetts Stingrays
61 Pacan, DavidDavid Pacan C R 25 2015 Ottawa, Ontario Stingrays
15 Perrier, MarcusMarcus Perrier D L 24 2014 Thunder Bay, Ontario Stingrays
18 Sauve, MaximeMaxime Sauve C L 26 2015 Tours, France Bears
17 Shea, BobbyBobby Shea D R 25 2015 Harrison Township, Michigan Bears
20 Staal, JaredJared Staal RW R 25 2015 Thunder Bay, Ontario Stingrays
30 Vanecek, VitekVitek Vanecek G L 20 2015 Havlickuv Brod, Czech Republic Capitals
28 Vigier, StephanStephan Vigier C L 26 2015 Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes, Manitoba Stingrays
Roster as of October 27, 2015.[81][82]

Current roster


Regular Season Playoffs
Season GP W L OTL SOL Pts GF GA Standing Year 1st round 2nd round 3rd round Kelly Cup
2010–11 72 37 29 3 3 80 194 204 2nd, South 2011 L, 1–3, WHL
2011–12 72 37 28 4 3 81 191 180 4th, South 2012 W, 3–1, GWT L, 1–4, KAL
2012–13 72 38 26 5 3 84 198 171 3rd, South 2013 L, 0–4, GWT
2013–14 72 43 23 2 4 92 197 173 1st, South 2014 L, 0–4, WHL
2014–15 72 45 20 1 6 97 224 163 2nd, East 2015 W, 4–3, REA W, 4–2, FLA W, 4–3, TOL L, 3–4, ALN

Updated August 7, 2015.[78][79][80]

This is a partial list of the last five seasons completed by the Stingrays. For the full season-by-season history, see List of South Carolina Stingrays seasons.

Recent seasons

In honor of Jerry Zucker's contributions to the team and the local community, the Stingrays created the Jerry Zucker Community Service Award, to be presented yearly to the Stingrays player who made the most significant impact on the local community. Past awardees include Spencer Carbery (2008–09), Matt Scherer (2009–10), Jordan Pietrus (2010–11), Johann Kroll (2011–12), and Scooter Vaughan (2012–13).[78]

The crowning event of the Stingrays season is the annual "Pink in the Rink" night, supporting Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the fight against breast cancer. Proceeds from ticket sales, vendor tables, and live and silent auctions featuring sports memorabilia including the actual game-used hockey sticks and jerseys were presented to the Lowcountry chapter of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Pink in the Rink 2009 raised over $20,000, while the 2010 event raised over $40,000.[75] The 2011 Pink in the Rink game raised the most to date, with donations in excess of $46,000.[76] With more than $24,000 raised by the sixth annual event in 2012, the team's total donations since the event's inception in 2006 come to more than $143,000.[77]

[74] The Stingrays organization honors the legacy of former owner

South Carolina Stingrays (in pink jerseys) battle the Toledo Walleye (in white jerseys) for control of the puck in front of the Walleye goaltender. The ice is dyed pink for Pink in the Rink 2010.
The Stingrays battle in front of the Toledo Walleye goal at Pink in the Rink 2010.

Community Service

The Stingrays maintain a strong online presence, utilizing social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter to engage with fans. Video clips of team commercials and interviews are made available via "Stingrays TV," the Stingrays' YouTube channel.[73]

Play-by-play Radio coverage of the Stingrays is handled by Zack Fisch, the club's Director of Communications and Broadcasting who joined the club in 2015. This coverage is available over the internet via the team's website.

Television coverage of Stingrays games is provided over the internet on a pay-per-view or subscription basis by ECHL.TV.

The Stingrays are covered by multiple media outlets. The Post and Courier provides newspaper coverage for the team. The team was covered by sports reporters Keith Namm and Gene Sapakoff from 1993–98. Andrew Miller currently reports on the Stingrays and also authors a blog entitled "Rays the Roof," where he provides opinion pieces on the team's performance and transactions.[72]


Additional mascots have included Little Puck, an anthropomorphic hockey puck who partnered with Cool Ray from 1993 to 2008,[67] and Excalibear, the Carolina Ice Palace's mascot, who joined Cool Ray for the 2010–2011 season.

The organization's charity events.[69][70][71] Cool Ray also provides entertainment and comic relief on ice and in the stands during games, and serves as the Stingrays' Kids Club mascot.


South Carolina Stingrays mascot Cool Ray wearing a military themed jersey and a patriotic top hat.
Cool Ray entertains fans during the Stingrays' Military Appreciation Night.

The team's primary logo has evolved over the years. Beginning as a realistic rendition of a stingray, it transitioned through a cartoon-style representation before settling on the stylized version used today. The state flag of South Carolina was originally used as the secondary logo (worn on the jersey shoulders). It has since been replaced by a variety of logos representing team affiliation, anniversary celebrations, and team championships. The current secondary logo (worn on home jerseys) returns to its origins as a rendition of the state flag, while the tertiary logo (worn on away jerseys) gives tribute to the Charleston area with its representation of the Ravenel Bridge.[66]


Current Stingrays home and away jerseys.
Current Stingrays home (white) and away (blue) jerseys, adopted in 2008

Team culture

On June 26, 2014, the Washington Capitals announced an affiliation agreement with the Stingrays for the 2014–15 season[65] giving the Stingrays two NHL affiliates for the season for what was intended to be a 20-team ECHL. In 2015, the ECHL Board of Directors voted to only allow one NHL affiliate per ECHL team following the merger with the Central Hockey League just before the 2014-15 season (a 28-team league) and the Boston Bruins switched their affiliation to the Atlanta Gladiators beginning with the 2015–16 season. The Capitals' affiliation with the Stingrays also included the Capitals sending their radio broadcaster to Charleston during selected 2015 ECHL playoff games, including the Kelly Cup Finals.

Spencer Carbery announced on September 4, 2013 that the team has agreed to terms with rookie forward Tory Allan and first-year defenseman Tom Janosz.[64]

On July 25, 2012, the Stingrays announced an affiliation deal with the NHL's Boston Bruins and their AHL affiliate Providence Bruins.[63]

[62] In a break with recent practice, the team selected a new assistant coach from outside the organization. [59] Assistant coach Spencer Carbery was tapped to take MacLean's place, making him the team's sixth head coach and the youngest head coach in the league.[58] The team announced in July 2011 that head coach Cail MacLean had accepted the assistant coaching position for the AHL's Abbotsford Heat, a spot previously held by former Stingrays head coach Jared Bednar.

Spencer Carbery era (2011–present)

A bright spot in the midst of the team's disappointing seasons came from a terrible tragedy. In February 2010, former Stingrays goaltender Kirk Daubenspeck—who played for the team from 1999 to 2006 and was part of the Kelly Cup championship team in 2001—was in a near-fatal car accident that resulted in a traumatic brain injury that left him in a coma for six days.[55] Friends, family members and former teammates from the Stingrays, the Hershey Bears, Culver Military Academy and the University of Wisconsin (Daubenspeck's alma maters) banded together to raise money to help defray the extensive medical bills. The team sold T-shirts bearing Daubenspeck's name and number (29) at the season's remaining home games.[56] In April 2010, current and former Stingrays donned their skates and took to the ice for the team's first ever alumni game, held to benefit the Daubenspeck family. The event (held at the Carolina Ice Palace) drew a capacity crowd of over 700 and raised over $20,000 in ticket sales and from a post-game jersey auction. Daubenspeck and his family were in attendance, and Daubenspeck dropped the game's ceremonial first puck.[57]

Former Stingray Rob Concannon was picked to succeed Darren Abbott as team president at the end of the 2009–10 season.[51] In August 2010, the Stingrays announced that former forward Spencer Carbery had been named the team's assistant coach.[52] With the return of forwards Maxime Lacroix and Pierre-Luc O'Brien—both of whom played a vital role in the 2009 Kelly Cup championship—the team looked to build momentum towards a fourth championship.[53] However, injuries, call-ups, and ultimately inconsistent play on the ice resulted in another disappointing first round playoff loss, this time to the Wheeling Nailers.[54]

Gregg Johnson faces off against Barret Ehgoetz; Cincinnati Cyclones at South Carolina Stingrays, March 7, 2010.
Gregg Johnson faces off against Barret Ehgoetz of the Cincinnati Cyclones during the 2009–10 season.

This success, however, was short-lived. Despite a strong regular season showing that left the Stingrays tied with the South Division (and American Conference) leader Charlotte Checkers and North Division leader Kalamazoo Wings, the team ended up fourth seed in the 2010 Kelly Cup playoffs, falling three games to two in the first round to the eventual champions, the Cincinnati Cyclones. For a team that was the first in the ECHL to reach 30 wins that season (in a 5–3 victory over the Reading Royals in front of a record sellout crowd of 10,570),[49] the first round defeat was disappointing to players and fans alike.[50]

Cail MacLean era (2009–11)

The Stingrays built on this momentum in the 2008–09 season, sweeping Cincinnati 4–0 in the conference finals and winning the Kelly Cup on the road in the culmination of a 4–3 series with the Alaska Aces.[45] Bednar resigned shortly thereafter, joining the Calgary Flames' system in Abbotsford as assistant coach,[46] and later earned his first AHL head coaching assignment with the St. Louis Blues' farm club in Peoria for 2010–11.[47] MacLean was named head coach, with the assistant coach position becoming vacant.[48] Building on their championship success, many players on the 2009 Kelly Cup team were called up to the American Hockey League during the 2009–10 season. Six players from the 2009 team played in the 2010 Calder Cup Championship - five for the victorious Hershey Bears, and one for the runner-up Texas Stars.

After failing to qualify for the ECHL playoffs for the only time in franchise history during the 2006–07 season,[41] Fitzsimmons resigned, and was assigned by the Washington Capitals as a scout.[42] Bednar took over as head coach, with Cail MacLean, who had been the captain for the Stingrays, as a part-time assistant while completing his studies at The Citadel.[43] Bednar took the Stingrays to the Kelly Cup playoffs for both of his seasons as head coach. In the 2007–08 season, the Stingrays advanced to the American Conference finals, losing 4–1 to the Cincinnati Cyclones in a suspense-filled series wherein three games (including the final) were decided in overtime.[44]

Jared Bednar era (2007–09)

South Carolina Stingrays and Charlotte Checkers battle for control of the puck at a center ice face off; Charlotte Checkers at South Carolina Stingrays, April 17, 2009.
The Stingrays battle the Charlotte Checkers for control of the puck during the first round of the 2009 Kelly Cup playoffs.

From 2003–06, the Stingrays experienced another run of first and second round playoff defeats. Despite a strong second-place finish in the Southeast Division in 2003, they fell three games to one to the Pee Dee Pride in the first round of the playoffs.[37] The Stingrays moved to the Southern Division for the 2003–04 season, finishing fourth in the regular season and advancing to the second round of the playoffs, where they were swept three games to none by the Florida Everblades, the final game a crushing 8–2 loss.[38] For the 2004–05 season, the Stingrays returned to the East Division, where they finished second in the regular season. They were defeated three games to one in the first round of the playoffs, again to the Everblades.[39] The 2005–06 season marked the Stingrays' first year in the newly designated South Division, in which they have remained to the present day. They finished fourth in the regular season and defeated the Charlotte Checkers in the Kelly Cup playoffs' first round, only to fall in a second round sweep—three games to none—by the Gwinnett Gladiators.[40]

After failing to advance to the first round of the ECHL playoffs the next season by losing a "play-in" game in the 2001–02 season to the Florida Everblades in their practice facility (a concert at the Coliseum forced the move), Adduono was released from his contract and was replaced by Fitzsimmons.[34] Jared Bednar, another longtime Stingray, was made assistant coach later.[35] Despite a long-standing association with the Buffalo Sabres, the Stingrays broke away just before the 2001–02 season and played three seasons as an independent team. For the 2004–05 season, the team agreed to an affiliation with the Washington Capitals.[36]

Jason Fitzsimmons era (2002–07)

The Stingrays finished the 2000–01 season first in both the Southeast Division and the Southern Conference. Ryan Brindley finished third among league defensemen with an average 10 points per game. The team accrued a season-record 141 penalty minutes in one game against the Greensboro Monarchs on October 13, 2000.[32] They finished second in the league that season with a 9-game overall winning streak and had a league-record 10-game road winning streak.[16] The Stingrays defeated the Arkansas RiverBlades three games to one in the first round and the Mobile Mysticks three games to two in the second round before sweeping the Louisiana IceGators four games to none to win the Southern Conference championship. They faced and defeated the Trenton Titans (then captained by future Stingrays head coach Cail MacLean) in five games to win their second Kelly Cup championship. Forward Dave Seitz, who scored 13 goals and 15 assists during the playoffs, was named playoff MVP.[33]

The team finished fourth in the Southeast Division in 1999–2000. Brad Dexter again finished third in total points among league defensemen with 66. He placed first among defensemen and fifth among all skaters for assists with 59.[31] The Stingrays set the league postseason record for most goals by one team in a two-game series with 11 goals in their two-game shutout of the Baton Rouge Kingfish in the preliminary round of the playoffs.[30] The team eliminated in-state rivals Pee Dee Pride three games to two to advance to the second round, where they were shut out in three games by the Louisiana IceGators.

For the 1998–99 season, Vaive accepted the head coaching position with the AHL's Saint John Flames. His assistant coach, Rick Adduono, was tapped to take over as Vaive's replacement as head coach and general manager.[27] Former Stingrays goaltender Jason Fitzsimmons was named assistant coach in Adduono's place.[28] The Stingrays finished third in the Southeast Division, with defenseman Brad Dexter third in the league for top-scoring defensemen with 55 points in 19 goals and 26 assists. Forward Dave Seitz led the league in game-winning goals with 11, while goaltender Jody Lehman finished seventh among league netminders with a 2.72 GAA and a 0.916 save percentage.[29] After receiving a first-round bye for the playoffs, the Stingrays fell in a second-round 3-game shutout to the Mississippi Sea Wolves. The final game was decided in overtime and ran to 110 minutes and 37 seconds, making it the fifth-longest overtime playoff game in league history as of the 2010–11 season.[30]

Rick Adduono era (1998–2002)

Early in the 1997–98 season, the Stingrays won a league-high 12 consecutive home games from October 24 to January 2 in which they accumulated 52 goals and allowed 24 goals against. Defenseman Chris Hynnes finished the regular season first in goals (19) and fourth in total points (58) among league defensemen. Goaltender Cory Cadden finished seventh in the league with a 2.85 GAA, a 0.907 save percentage and 30 wins in 45 games.[25] The team finished at the top of the Southeast Division, but fell in a first round playoff series against their new in-state rival, the Pee Dee Pride. The Pride advanced after coming back from a three-goal deficit to win the fifth game of a best of five series in overtime. Vaive reported after the fact that replays indicated that the game-tying goal was invalid but the referee missed the call, resulting in the overtime period and the Stingrays' eventual defeat.[26]

Following their Kelly Cup victory, ECHL management accused the franchise of circumventing the league's salary cap by colluding with the city of North Charleston to funnel money through a city-run youth hockey program to provide payouts to players. After two months of investigation by the league, the Stingrays were assessed a US$50,000 fine, and Vaive was suspended for the first six games of the 1997–98 season. The Internal Revenue Service determined that no state or federal tax laws were broken, but the incident sparked a re-evaluation by the ECHL of the teams' salary caps.[24]

In 1996–97, the Stingrays won both the ECHL championship Kelly Cup (defeating the Louisiana IceGators four games to one) and the Brabham Cup (awarded to the team with the best regular season record), becoming the first ECHL team and one of three overall to win both a regular season and postseason championship in the same year.[20] The Alaska Aces (2006, 2011) and the Cincinnati Cyclones (2008) later accomplished this feat. Forwards Ed Courtenay and Mike Ross tied for the highest total points in the league, each with 110 points in combined goals and assists. Forward Dave Seitz finished seventh with 97 total points.[21] Ross was also named the league's Most Valuable Player (MVP), the only member of the Stingrays to receive this distinction through the 2010–11 season.[22] Goaltender Jason Fitzsimmons was selected as the Kelly Cup playoffs MVP.[23] Fitzsimmons totaled 13 wins in 17 playoff games and achieved a 3.38 GAA with a 0.903 save percentage.

The Stingrays returned to the East Division in 1995–96 and finished third in the regular season, falling in the second round of the playoffs to the Charlotte Checkers.[18] They posted an 8-game road winning streak that season, lasting from December 15 until January 13, in which they accumulated 48 goals and surrendered 27 goals against. Defenseman Scott Boston finished sixth among top-scoring defensemen in the league with 58 total points in 67 games. The Stingrays fell to second place in league attendance with an average 7,447 fans per game.[19]

In 1994–95, the team took the top spot in the Southern Division but were knocked out in the second round by the Nashville Knights.[15] They set the current league record for the longest home winning streak that season with 18 victories at home between December 23, 1994, and March 19, 1995.[16] Goaltender Steve Shields finished second in the league with a 2.68 goals against average (GAA), a 0.912 save percentage and 11 wins in 17 games, while Jason Fitzsimmons (who later served as assistant and then head coach for the Stingrays) finished sixth in the league with a 2.97 GAA, a 0.901 save percentage and 24 wins in 37 games played. The Stingrays drew the highest attendance in the league, averaging 8,589 fans per game.[17]

The Stingrays finished sixth in the East Division in their inaugural season and were eliminated in the first round of the 1993–94 playoffs by the Hampton Roads Admirals.[11] Despite their early playoff exit, the team had several significant achievements during their inaugural season. Center Sylvain Fleury finished tenth among league skaters for total points with 95 points in 68 games played and scored a league season-high five goals in an 11–6 victory over the Greensboro Monarchs on December 26.[12] Left winger Andy Bezeau was second in the league in penalty minutes, accumulating 352 minutes in 36 games (29 fewer games than Trevor Buchanan, the league leader with 422 minutes).[13] From January 19–28, the Stingrays went on a six-game winning streak wherein they totaled 43 goals for and only 13 goals against, including two games in which they scored 11 goals each against their opponents (one of which, against the Huntington Blizzard, had 67 shots on goal by the Stingrays).[14] The team led the league in attendance with an average of 9,151 fans per game.[3]

Rick Vaive era (1993–98)


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