Recap written by Robert Molnar.
GREENVILLE, SC – Ryan Martindale scored two goals while Brendan O’Donnell added a goal and an assist to lead Florida Everblades (38-20-0-2, 78 pts) to a 5-2 victory over the Greenville Swamp Rabbits (27-26-7-0, 61 pts) Saturday night at the Bon Secours Wellness Arena. Florida finished the road trip grabbing four of a possible six points.
Taking advantage of their opening power play, the Everblades’ took the game’s opening lead midway through the opening period. Moving the puck around, Kevin Lynch spotted Brendan O’Donnell open, moving towards the net. A perfect pass from Lynch sent the puck right to the middle of the slot where O’Donnell snapped a quick shot past the glove of Greenville goaltender Alain Valiquette and into the corner of the net.
Keeping up the offensive zone pressure, the ‘Blades doubled their lead just under four minutes after the opening goal. Getting the puck out in front, an initial shot from Ryan Martindale was stopped by Alain Valiquette. Allowing the rebound, Martindale took the puck and wrapped around the back of the net before burying the puck past the diving goaltender.
A fight between the Everblades’ Matt Stanisz and Greenville’s Tyler Elbrecht began to give the Swamp Rabbits some momentum. Moving into the Everblades zone, Ryan Rashid fired an initial shot that was superbly stopped by Everblades’ goaltender Anthony Peters. Giving up the rebound, Jack Combs managed to get to the loose puck before firing it off one of the many players surrounding the net and past a diving Peters.
Coming into the second period, the Everblades began to take control of the game. Entering the attacking zone, Brendan O’Donnell found Gabriel Desjardins on the left wing side. Moving through the left wing circle, Desjardins fired a quick wrist shot that deflected off the pads of Alain Valiquette and into the back of the net.
The Everblades again added to their lead less than three minutes after the Desjardins goal. Quickly moving into the attacking zone on the left wing side, Ryan Martindale executed an excellent give-and-go with Corey Cowick. Receiving the pass near the crease, Martindale slowed up and wristed his shot between the Greenville net minder and the far side post.
Just over 30-seconds later, the quick-fire Everblades offense struck again, extending their lead to 5-1. Stopping the initial shot from Jon DiSalvatore, Alain Valiquette allowed the rebound to role to the right wing side. Charging hard through the attacking zone, Rob Florentino got to the puck at the low circle and smoked his shot past Valiquette. Following the goal, Valiquette was replaced in goal for Greenville by Mackenzie Skapski.
With the Swamp Rabbits trailing by such an insurmountable lead entering the third period, Greenville attempted to try and the score a respectable one. A second goal from Jack Combs late in the final frame was all that the Swamp Rabbits would manage thanks to some sensational saves from Anthony Peters.
Anthony Peters was superb in goal for the Everblades, earning the win after stopping 26 of the 28-shots he faced. Alain Valiquette suffers the loss in goal for the Swamp Rabbits, allowing five goals on 20-shots. Mackenzie Skapski also appeared in net for Greenville, stopping all nine shots he faced.
The Florida Everblades return to the ice next Friday night when they will travel to the North Charleston Coliseum to take on the South Carolina Stingrays in a matchup of the top two teams in the South Division. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. Eastern time. Fans can catch the game broadcast on 770 AM or online by CLICKING HEREUpcoming Everblades Home Games
Friday, March 25 vs. Greenville, 7:30 p.m. – Kids eat FREE in the Breakaway Sports Pub with the purchase of an adult entree!
Saturday, March 26 vs. Greenville, 7:00 p.m. – Guns N' Hoses night. It's a hockey double-header as local police and fire fighters battle it out on the ice at 5:15 p.m. Then at 7:00 p.m. the Everblades will wear special Guns N' Hoses themed jerseys which will be auctioned off following the game. A ticket to the Everblades game gets you into the Guns N' Hoses game for free. Pregame tailgate party featuring live music, bounce houses and face painting begins at 5:00 p.m.
Game Tickets: Everblades tickets may be purchased at the Florida Community Bank Box Office located at Germain Arena, or at any Ticketmaster outlet, or online at www.ticketmaster.com
Discounted Group Tickets: Bring your group of 10 or more to a game at a discounted price, and also receive an Everblades souvenir! Group tickets are available for all home games. For more information on group tickets, call 239-948-7825.
Partial Season Ticket Packages: Flexible partial season ticket plans are available to help fit your budget and schedule. For more information, call 239-948-7825, or stop by the team's main office located at Germain Arena from Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Fans may also stop by our sales tables located in the concourse at Everblades games. .
The Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliateof the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes###