Poturalki, Saarela, help Checkers blast Rocket

Poturalki, Saarela, help Checkers blast Rocket
Despite some push-back late in regulation, the Checkers rolled their way to weekend sweep with a 5-3 defeat of the Laval Rocket.

Carrying the momentum of last night’s overtime win, the Checkers came out firing in today’s rematch, with Aleksi Saarela finishing off a tic-tac-toe passing play from linemates Lucas Wallmark and Greg McKegg to put the visitors on the board first. That trio would connect again in the middle frame to double that advantage, this time with McKegg scooping home a nice feed. The Checkers pounced on the reeling Rocket minutes later as Andrew Poturalski powered through a group of Laval defenders and fired a falling-away shot past Zach Fucale to put Charlotte ahead 3-0 through 40 minutes of play.

Poturalski kept things rolling in the third, opening the frame by tapping home a rebound out front for his second of the game. Laval finally broke through on the scoreboard minutes later, but a one-time blast by Saarela on the man advantage answered for the Checkers. The Rocket had one last push left in them, tallying back-to-back power-play tallies in the final five minutes of regulation, but the visitors would put an end to that, icing out the remainder of the clock to clinch a 5-3 victory. 


The Checkers have now won four straight road games, one shy of their longest streak this season … The Checkers went a perfect 4-0-0 against the Laval Rocket this season … Tonight was the third time this season that the Checkers have had two players score multiple goals … Nicolas Roy’s seven shots on goal are tied for the most by a Checker this season … Lucas Wallmark extended his assist/point streak to eight games, tying the longest streaks by a Checker this season … Greg McKegg extended his point streak to seven games … Saarela lit the lamp for the second consecutive game and Janne Kuokkanen notched an assist for the second consecutive game … Josiah Didier missed the game while serving the second of his three-game suspension … Jake Chelios and Andrew Miller missed the game due to injury … Nick Schilkey, Mike Ferrantino, Sergey Tolchinsky and Tyler Ganly served as healthy extras

Up Next

The Checkers will return home for a week of practice before heading back on the road next weekend, starting with a 7:05 p.m. puck drop Friday in Rochester.
Press release provided by the Charlotte Checkers