By Keaton Hanley
With the luck of the Irish in full effect on St. Paddy’s Day, the Blades boogied to a win on 90’s night over the Orlando Solar Bears 3-2, securing the Wawa Sunshine Cup for the second straight year. Alex Nedeljkovic (4-2-0-0) picked up his fourth win on the season putting away 30 of 2 shots. Ryan Massa (16-11-3-1) picked up the loss.
The ‘Blades started the night off quickly, scoring just 24 seconds into the contest on a goal by John McCarron off a rebound that found him waiting in the slot, giving them an early lead.
Florida added to their lead at 11:35 off of a Zack Kamrass slapshot on the power play. The puck bounced around in front of the net and squirted unexpectedly out to Kamrass at the top of the left wing circle. Kamrass delivered a laser shot by Massa as he was diving from the opposite side of the net.
Later in the period, the Everblades found themselves on the power play again., and added another goal on a near perfect one timer from Brendan O’Donnell on the saucer pass through the middle of the ice from Josh Wesley. O’Donnell netted his 36th goal on the season, and took sole possession of the league lead in goals.
Orlando would break the shutout with 17 seconds left in the period on a saucer pass from Chris Crane to a streaking Austin Block who extended his stick with one hand to deflect it by Nedeljkovic. The goal sent the ‘Blades into the second intermission up 3-1.
The Solar Bears pulled within one with 16:06 left in the third on an odd man rush with Patrick Watling scoring off a tip in shot in front.
Orlando continued to press in the third, outshooting the ‘Blades 12-3 in the final period, but Nedeljkovic shut the door on the Solar Bears for the remainder of the period, giving the Blades the 3-2 win and the Wawa Sunshine Cup for the second straight season.
With the win, the Everblades set up an opportunity to clinch a playoff spot with a Cincinnati loss at Alaska late Friday night.Upcoming Home Games & PromotionsSaturday, March 18 vs. Orlando, 7:00 p.m. – Guns N Hoses night! Join us at 4:30 p.m. as our local fire fighters and police will battle it out on the ice! The Everblades will wear special police and fire fighter themed jerseys (pictured below) which will be auctioned off following the game to benefit the 4 The Kids Foundation. A ticket to the Everblades game will get you in to the police and fire fighters game for free! Fans can also bring any paper products they needed shredded as Safeguard Shredding will be on hand prior to the game to offer FREE shredding for fans. So bring your boxes for shredding!
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 atwww.ticketmaster.comSpecial Offer! Purchase any new ticket package for the 2016-17 season, and receive an Everblades jersey t-shirt and a $20 gift card from Ford's Garage! Locations include Cape Coral, Downtown Fort Myers and Miromar Outlets in Estero. We offer several tickets packages designed to help fit your budget and schedule
Discounted Group Tickets: Bring your group of 10 or more to a game at a discounted price, and you may also receive an Everblades souvenir! Group tickets are available for all home games. For more information on group tickets, call 239-948-7825.This release courtesy of Fort Myers Technical College & Cape Coral Technical College
The Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliateof the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes###