ESTERO, Fla. – Ryan Cruthers scored twice, while Matt Sisca finished with three assists to help pace the Orlando Solar Bears to an 8-2 victory over the Florida Everblades at Germain Arena Friday night. The win was the first in franchise history for the Solar Bears.
Florida’s usual quick start offense was completely held in check, and for the first time this season, the Orlando Solar Bears got on the board first. Ryan Ginand received a pass directly in front of the net, where he took three attempts to finally get the puck in the goal past Everblades goaltender John Muse.
The goal opened up the floodgates for the Solar Bears in opening period, as the received goals from C.J. Severyn, Josh Caron, and Olivier Fortier, sending Orlando with a 4-0 lead at the first break.
Orlando continued to shine in the second period, adding on four more goals. Kyle Medvec finished off a wrap around attempt, sliding the puck behind muse to extend the lead to 5-0. The goal signaled the end of the night for Muse, who exited the game allowing five goals on 25 shots faced. .
Pat Nagle manned the pipes for the ‘Blades the rest of the way out, Orlando was bale to tack on three more before the second intermission. Nick Petersen scored his third goal of the season, putting the puck in the net off of his won rebound to put the score at 6-0. Ryan Cruthers scored twice before the end of the period to give Orlando the commanding 8-0 lead.
The Everblades continued to struggle offensively in the first 40 minutes, and an apparent goal by Beau Schmitz and was kept off the board after a goaltender interference call was assessed to Florida, keeping the score at 8-0 at the end of the second period.
Florida finally found their rhythm in the third, and got a quick goal one minute into the period. Alex Hutchings led a 2-on-1 charge into the Solar Bears zone, and sent the puck across the slot to Justin Shugg, who flipped it into the net to bring the score to 8-1.
The Everblades got a second goal halfway through the period as a shot from David Rutherford was redirected by Leigh Salters into the net, bringing the Blades within six. The two teams would coast through the remainder of the game giving Orlando their first win of the season with a score of 8-2.
John Curry earns the win for the Solar Bears stopping 20 of 22 shots, while John Muse takes the loss, while Pat Nagle allowed three goals on 24 shots faced in a relief effort.
The two teams will meet again tomorrow night at the Amway Center in Orlando. The game will mark the inaugural home opener for the Solar Bears. Game time is slated for 7:00 p.m. Fans can tune in to the game on 96 K-Rock (96.1 FM) or listen online at www.floriodaeverblades.com
The Everblades will return home on Wednesday, October 24 against the South Carolina Stingrays. Fans can enjoy $2 Hot Dogs, $2 drafts, $2 Wines all night long! College night: ladies get in free & guys receive a $5 ticket when they present their college I.D. to the Capital Bank Box Office.