ECHL goalies drop the gloves, get thrown out of game

Michael McNiven of the Jacksonville Icemen, in white, and Logan Thompson of the South Carolina Stingrays provided fans with a rare spectacle on Sunday. (Twitter//@SCStingrays)

If you were near the city of North Charleston on Sunday but not one of the 2,605 people in attendance for the South Carolina Stingrays’ clash with the Jacksonville Icemen in ECHL regular season action, you’re going to be kicking yourself.

With the Stingrays up 2-0 in the third period of what had become a very heated contest, a fight broke out between Icemen centre Everett Clark and Stingrays winger Cole Ully. The frame had already featured plenty of the rough stuff and a number of penalties to boot — including a goaltender interference infraction called on both sides within 68 seconds of each other before Clark and Ully’s gloves hit the ice.

Not wanting to be left out on the fun, the game’s netminders — Jacksonville’s Michael McNiven and South Carolina’s Logan Thompson — decided to throw hands with one another as well. Because, you know, why not?

Thankfully, we have footage of the entire scrap from someone’s cellphone that was at the game.

McNiven is in the white jersey, Thompson in the blue.

While officials were busy separating Clark and Ully after their bout, McNiven and Thompson took advantage of the opportunity to square up and let out some frustration with their fists. After both parties got some swings in, Thompson wrestled McNiven to the ice to end it.

If the shouting and hollering during the clip were any indication, fans in attendance were loving what they were seeing. However, the two goalies did face additional discipline for their actions.

Since their fight was the second of the same stoppage, McNiven and Thompson — both 22-year-old Canadians — were slapped with game misconducts. As a result, with just under 13 minutes remaining in the period, the backup goaltender for each side — South Carolina’s Parker Milner and Jacksonville’s Adam Carlson — entered the game to take over for their scrappy starters.

The Stingrays ended up hanging on for a 2-1 victory in a game that featured 118 penalty minutes.

The Icemen are the Winnipeg Jets’ ECHL affiliate while the Sting Rays are linked to the Washington Capitals.

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