Down by a goal in the waning seconds of regulation, the Checkers were mounting one last push for the equalizer. The puck worked its way to a spinning Zac Dalpe in the slot, and when his shot attempt hit a sliding Bridgeport body in front of the net Gerry Mayhew was there to collect the loose puck and put it home with less than two ticks remaining on the clock to knot the score and force overtime.
1.1 left and Mayhew ties it! pic.twitter.com/yPUYa8HTF1— Charlotte Checkers (@CheckersHockey) January 7, 2024
Overtime is Gerry’s time 😤 pic.twitter.com/NWJjNwW8Od— Charlotte Checkers (@CheckersHockey) January 7, 2024
Before those fireworks, the Checkers had built up a lead through 40 minutes of play thanks to a quick power-play conversion from Zac Dalpe and a low-angle rip from Wise in the second to negate Bridgeport’s opening tally. Things shifted in the third, though, as the home side amped up the pressure to even the score midway through the frame and take its first lead of the night with under three minutes to go - setting the stage for Mayhew’s takeover.