It was a familiar sight in San Diego Wednesday night as the Checkers and Gulls played beyond regulation for the third straight meeting. And for the third straight meeting it was the Checkers who emerged victorious, this time thanks to the heroics of California native Patrick Khodorenko.

Halfway through a high-flying overtime period Zac Dalpe scooped up a failed clearing attempt from the San Diego zone and created an odd-man rush, feeding the puck over to Khodorenko who waited out the Gulls netminder and buried the winner into the back of the net.

The regulation portion of the contest featured plenty of action but not much fodder for the scoreboard. The opening tally didn’t come until the waning minutes of the first period, and San Diego headed to the dressing room with the lead. The Checkers tilted the ice in their favor for period two, outshooting the home side 13-5, and were able to snatch the lead away with a pair of tallies - the first a nifty finish in tight from Rasmus Asplund, the second a Casey Fitzgerald point blast that got a piece of Patrick Giles as he created havoc in front of the net.

Charlotte’s lead wouldn’t survive, though, as San Diego drew things back even late in the middle frame, and that score would last through a tight third period to set the stage for the Checkers’ overtime triumph.

Making his third start of the season and second of this California road trip, Ludovic Waeber provided a boost for Charlotte on the back end with 24 saves on the night. Most notably the Swiss netminder came up huge for the visitors down the stretch, denying all 12 shots he saw in the third period alone.


Head Coach Geordie Kinnear on his team’s play
“I thought the back and forth overtime, it is what it is. We’ve been fortunate against this team. Five-on-five I liked a lot of stuff, especially in the second period.”

Kinnear on his team creating sustained pressure but not having their shots fall
“You have to give [San Diego] a lot of credit, they blocked a lot of shots and didn’t allow us to get a lot of pucks to the blue paint even though we were trying to get it there. Credit to that team.”

Kinnear on his team’s strong forechecking tonight
“That’s how we want to play. We’ve got some guys that can move up front on the forecheck. I didn’t have four lines but I had all the forwards going tonight. We dressed one short but I thought everyone was on it tonight. Which is good, especially after not a great game in San Jose.”

Kinnear on injury updates for Justin Sourdif, Matt Kiersted, Mack Guzda and Spencer Knight
“Honestly most of these guys are more day-to-day. Kiersted still maybe a little bit longer.”


The Checkers have had three games go beyond regulation this season - all overtime wins against San Diego … Patrick Khodorenko now has two game-winning goals this season, tied for second on the team … Will Lockwood has recorded at least one point in all three games he’s played for Charlotte this season … Patrick Giles has points in two of his last three games … Casey Fitzgerald’s assist was his second of the season and first since Oct. 14 … Tonight matched a franchise record with the Checkers getting zero power plays throughout the night and set a franchise record with two combined penalty minutes… Ludovic Waeber is undefeated in three North American starts … Matt Zenzola, a local San Diego goalie who played five ECHL games in 2015-16 but has otherwise played exclusively in the SPHL - most recently in 2017-18 - signed a PTO before the game and backed up for Charlotte … Riley Bezeau, Mark Senden, Justin Sourdif, Cam Morrison, Brendan Perlini, Matt Kiersted, Ryan McAllsiter, Mack Guzda, Spencer Knight and Evan Cormier were the scratches for Charlotte