About the teams: The Kalamazoo Wings (38-26-2-6) finished first in the North Division and clinched their third consecutive division title in the process. The South Carolina Stingrays (37-26-4-5) ended the season in last place of the South Division. Even though they finished in last place in their division, the Stingrays were only three points behind the K-Wings overall. Meeting four times during the regular season, the two teams split the regular season series.
Playoff history: The K-Wings have earned a playoff berth in each of their first three seasons in the ECHL and have a 17-11 record. The Stingrays are making their 18th appearance in the postseason, and first under coach Spencer Carbery. The Stingrays are 83-69 all time in the playoffs. This series will mark the first time that the K-Wings and Stingrays have faced each other in the postseason.
Home ice advantage: Just like the first round, the K-Wings, who finished in first place in the North Division and hold the third seed overall in the American Conference in the playoffs, hold home ice advantage over the Stingrays who finished as the seventh seed. Starting on home ice for the first two games in the best-of-seven matchup, games 3, 4 and 5 will be played in South Carolina. The final two games of the series, if needed, will shift back to Kalamazoo. During the regular season, the K-Wings won two of their four meetings on the Stingrays’ home ice while the Stingrays won the other two games against the K-Wings at Wings Stadium.
Special teams: In their four games against each other, the K-Wings were 6-for-20 on the power play (30.0 percent) while the Stingrays were 3-for-18 (16.7 percent). On the penalty kill, the K-Wings were 15-for-18 (83.3 percent) and the Stingrays went 14-for-20 (70.0 percent).
Scoring leaders: Justin Taylor led all K-Wings with five points against the Stingrays (three goals and two assists) during the regular season. David de Kastrozza led the Stingrays with two goals and one assist while Nick Tabisz had three assists. Tabisz is no longer with the Stingrays.
Overall season stats: The K-Wings were 18-14-4 on home ice and 20-12-4 while away from Wings Stadium. Faring better at home, the Stingrays went 22-11-3 but were not as good on the road with a 15-17-4 record. Leading the ECHL in goals scored during the regular season, the K-Wings netted 264 goals (3.67 percent), while the Stingrays were 18th with 191 goals (2.65 percent). Giving up 237 goals (3.29 percent) the K-Wings ranked 16 th overall while the Stingrays were second with 180 (2.50 percent). The power play was good to the K-Wings as they finished in a tie for second overall in the league scoring 73 man advantage goals in 322 chances (22.7 percent) while the Stingrays were 16th scoring 53 goals on 318 opportunities (16.6 percent). On the penalty kill however, the K-Wings were 20th stopping 77.0 percent and the Stingrays were 8th with 82.0 percent.
On the airwaves: Every playoff game will be carried live on WLKM 95.9 FM, with the pregame show starting 15 minutes before game time. Fans can also watch the games live on the America One network. The link can be found on the K-Wings website (www.kwings.com) on the right hand side. Cost is $9.
Round 2 Schedule:
Game 1 — Friday, April 13 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Kalamazoo
Game 2 — Saturday, April 14 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Kalamazoo
Game 3 — Wednesday, April 18 at 7:05 p.m. ET at South Carolina
Game 4 — Friday, April 20 at 7:05 p.m. ET at South Carolina
Game 5 — Saturday, April 21 at 7:30 p.m. ET at South Carolina (if necessary)
Game 6 — Tuesday, April 24 at 7 p.m. ET at Kalamazoo (if necessary)
Game 7 — Wednesday, April 25 at 7 p.m. ET at Kalamazoo (if necessary)