Four-Goal Explosion Earns Blades Weekend Sweep

October 19, 2013


Orlando, FL – Trailing 2-0 through two periods, the Florida Everblades rallied for four unanswered goals for a 4-2 win Saturday at the Amway Center over the Orlando Solar Bears to complete a home-and-home sweep of the Blades’ intrastate rivals.

After what appeared to be a goal two minutes into the third by Mike Merrifield was waved off by the referees, Merrifield came right back 32 seconds later to redirect a point shot from Joe Stejskal and get the Blades on the board at 2-1.

A mere 27 seconds later, Matthew Pistilli released from the penalty box and grabbed a loose puck behind the Orlando defense for a breakaway, which he would convert with a low shot past Bears goalie Christopher Gibson to knot the game at two at the 17:01 mark of the third.

The two sides appeared to be headed for overtime until a Merrifield faceoff win sprung Brandon MacLean to tiptoe the goal line and roof a shot over Gibson’s glove with 1:55 to go in regulation, boosting the Everblades to their first lead of the night at 3-2.

Pistilli put the finishing touches on the come-from-behind victory, blasting a shot from center ice into an empty net with 53 seconds left, sending Orlando fans to the exit with the goal that gave the game its final score of 4-2.

Tallies in the first two periods for Orlando’s Zach Harrison and Cody Wild put the Bears up 2-0, setting the stage for the Everblades’ third-period dramatics.

Kristers Gudlevskis improved to 2-0-0-0 on just 12 saves, while Gibson slipped to 0-2-0-0 despite 25 stops.

The Blades now strike out on a four-game West Coast road trip, starting Friday in southern California against the Ontario Reign with a 10:00pm EST puck drop and Citizens Business Bank Arena.

Friday’s interdivision contest will be broadcast locally on FOX Sports Radio 1350 AM and worldwide online on America ONE, the internet television provider for the ECHL, at Pregame coverage will get under way at 9:45pm.

2013-14 Season Ticket Package Information

Ticket packages for the 2013-14 season are currently on sale—and going fast!  Full season packages begin at $380, while 10 and 20 game packages start as low as $160. Sign-up for a new season ticket package today, and receive a $20 gift card per seat to Outback Steakhouse!

For more information call 239-948-7825, or stop by the Everblades main office located at Germain Arena.

Office hours are Monday – Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.


The Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes and Tampa Bay Lightning.