GREENVILLE, S.C. – Aaron Luchuk's hat-trick performance helped to overpower the Greenville Swamp Rabbits as they fell to the Orlando Solar Bears 7-2 on Saturday night at Bon Secours Wellness Arena.
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The first meeting between the Swamp Rabbits and the Solar Bears didn't take long to produce offense, as Jake Smith scored his seventh of the season just 3:18 into the game for the 1-0 Greenville lead. Not long after, at 5:59, Orlando answered with a deflection goal from Tanner Dickinson. Later in the period, at 17:54, Orlando broke into the zone with a 2-on-1 and capitalized with an Aaron Luchuk goal for the 2-1 lead.
In the second period, the team's traded shots before Orlando converted for a 3-1 advantage, as a misplayed puck fell for Aaron Luchuk, who scored his second of the game at 14:35. After a hard hit in the Swamp Rabbits' offensive zone, Greenville's Joe Leahy dropped the gloves with Chris Harpur late in the period.
The third saw Orlando score a pair of goals to add to its advantage, as Mitch Hoelscher was credited with a power-play goal at 5:03, and Alex Frye added another at 6:09. At 15:02 Smith was credited with a power-play goal for Greenville, before Luchuck secured his hat-trick on an empty-net goal at 16:58. At 17:52, Tanner Schachle netted his first of the season, solidifying the 7-2 final.
With the loss, the Swamp Rabbits remain atop the Eastern Conference but fall to 19-8-0-0, while the Solar Bears improve to 13-9-1-1.
The Swamp Rabbits remain at Bon Secours Wellness Arena on Saturday night, as they welcome the Savannah Ghost Pirates at 7 p.m.
Swamp Rabbits Single-Game tickets, Full Season, and Half Season Tickets for the 2023-24 season are on sale now at SwampRabbits.com or by calling (864) 674-7825.