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EBERLE'S HAT TRICK LEADS TO THROTTLING OF ATLANTA

Friday, April 12th
EBERLE'S HAT TRICK LEADS TO THROTTLING OF ATLANTA

GREENVILLE, S.C.–Tanner Eberle netted a natural hat trick for his first of the season, Anthony Beauchamp scored a pair of goals, and Brannon McManus recorded three assists to propel the Greenville Swamp Rabbits far past the Atlanta Gladiators in the teams’ final contest of the 2023-24 campaign, 7-3.

The Swamp Rabbits struck first at 7:21 of the first period, courtesy of Ethan Somoza. In a net-front scramble that ultimately resulted in a multi-player scrap, Ryan Francis skated the puck into the crease in an unsuccessful attempt to tuck it behind Atlanta goaltender Gustavs Grigals. Though Francis was pushed out of the crease, Somoza quickly finished the job, pushing the puck into the net from under Grigals for the 1-0 lead. Shortly after, Eberle scored his first-of-three goals of the matchup to double Greenville’s lead, firing a laser of a snap shot from inside the blue line to give Greenville a 2-0 lead with 6:26 left in the first (Brannon McManus and Bobby Russell assisted).

The Swamp Rabbits bookended the scoring in the middle frame, starting with Eberle’s second goal–and McManus’s second assist–just 2:25 into the period, slamming a rebound from the right side of the net to triple the Swamp Rabbits advantage to 3-0. Eberle completed his hat trick just under four minutes later, redirecting a shot from Bobby Russell shot from the high slot to balloon the lead to 4-0 at 5:47 of the second (Russell and McManus assisted, the latter earning his third). Atlanta got on the board 17 seconds after Eberle’s third goal, as Ryan Cranford potted a top-shelf shot following a 2-on-1 rush with Joshua Boyer. The Rabbits closed the period with a shorthanded tally, created by Zach Tupker. With 2:41 left, Tupker led a two-on-one charge down the ice with Josh McKechney, and dished to the latter crashing the net. McKechney redirected it home to increase Greenville’s lead to 5-1, giving Tupker his first professional point.

Tempers flared early in the third period when Griffin Luce headhunted Brett Kemp, who would not return from the illegal check to the head. Luce was tossed with a match penalty, and Atlanta notched a second tally in the four-on-four hockey that ensued. At 2:02 of the third, Parker AuCoin rifled a shot home from the high slot to close the gap to 5-2 (Rob Calisti assisted). The Swamp Rabbits never let off the gas and earned a sixth ignition of the goal lamp courtesy of Anthony Beauchamp, deflecting a Jake Flynn shot past Grigals to make it 6-2 with 7:30 played in the game. Undeterred, Atlanta shrank the lead to three again on a fancy behind-the-back pass from Navrin Mutter to Brendan Hoffman, with the latter finishing in point blank range of the net to make it a 6-3 hockey game (Mutter and Calisti assisted). Anthony Beauchamp ended the scoring entries with his second of the night, rifling home a wrister from the right side on a drop pass from Logan Britt, his first professional point, bringing the game to a 7-3 final score with 4:01 left.

Jacob Ingham stopped 26 of 29 shots in the win (17-9-3-1).

The Swamp Rabbits weekend continues with a home-and-home series against the Savannah Ghost Pirates, starting tomorrow, April 13th, with puck drop set for 7:00 p.m. EST at Enmarket Arena. Both Savannah and Greenville return to Bon Secours Wellness Arena on Sunday, April 14th, for a 3:05 p.m. puck drop and “Fan Appreciation Night”, presented by Fluor, featuring the team’s special warmup jerseys worn this season.

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About the Greenville Swamp Rabbits …

Acquired by Spire Sports + Entertainment (SS+E) in 2020, the Greenville Swamp Rabbits hockey team have been providing family friendly, live entertainment at Bon Secours Wellness Arena since 2010. Formerly the Greenville Road Warriors, the Swamp Rabbits are the highest-level professional minor league franchise in South Carolina. The Swamp Rabbits are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL's LA Kings and the AHL's Ontario Reign. Greenville is a member of the ECHL, Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League.

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