Gwinnett, GA – Rallies of three and five goals doomed the Florida Everblades Saturday as the Gwinnett Gladiators laid an 8-1 decision on the Blades at The Arena at Gwinnett Center.
Scoreless through the first five minutes of the game, Gwinnett exploded for three straight goals in the first period on tallies from Brendan Walker, Josh Currie and Dirk Southern to blast ahead 3-0 with 10:30 to go in the opening frame.
Compounding the Blades’ problems was the red-hot play of Gwinnett goalie Paul Karpowich, who denied a point-blank opportunity on Parker Stanfield amid nine first period saves.
Will MacDonald got Florida on the board 2:24 into the second, giving the Blades a glimmer of hope by slamming home a one-timer from Jordan Henry to cut the score to 3-1.
Gwinnett, however, responded with another three-goal avalanche, getting strikes from Joey Haddad, Kurtis Bartliff and Maxime Legault to stretch the lead to 6-1 after two.
Karpowich continued his mastery of the Everblades in the third, turning aside all 16 shots he saw—including a Mike Merrifield breakaway.
Back-to-back Gladiator power play goals in the final five minutes of the game from Evan Bloodoff and Currie gave the contest its final score of 8-1.
Riku Helenius took the loss in net, making 29 saves on 37 shots. Karpowich earned #1 star honors on the night with 36 stops for the victory.
The Blades now return home to open a four-game homestand with a 7:30pm Friday showdown with the first-place South Carolina Stingrays at Germain Arena.
Tickets are on sale right now at the Capital Bank Box Office, open Monday-Friday, 10:00am until 6:00pm.
Friday’s top-two South Division clash will be broadcast live online at FloridaEverblades.com and on the Everblades’ app for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, with a video webcast available through America ONE, the official broadband and mobile broadcaster of the ECHL, at www.americaonesports.com. Pregame coverage will get under way at 7:15pm.
Beat the Box Office!
Don’t want to pay the box office rate for Everblades tickets? You don’t have to! Save up to $7.00 per ticket with great 10 and 20-game flex plans and group rates for the remainder of the 2013-14 campaign. Lock in your flex plan or group seats now for the Blades’ next home game on January 10.
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.###