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Everblades Force a Game 7 with 6-4 Victory Over Orlando

Tuesday, April 25th
Everblades Force a Game 7 with 6-4 Victory Over Orlando

By Keaton Hanley

ESTERO, FL – Brant Harris scored twice, while Levko Koper finished with three-points to help propel the Everblades to a 6-4 victory over the Orlando Solar Bears in Game 6 of the South Division Semifinals Tuesday night at Germain Arena.  Florida ties the series at 3-3 to force a decisive Game 7 on Wednesday at Germain Arena (7:30 p.m.).

BOX SCORE

VIDEO:  Watch the Game Highlights 

The Blades got out to a great start, absolutely buzzing, and were able to get their first goal on the board 5:30 into the game off of a Brant Harris shot that rebounded out to the side of the net for Levko Koper. Koper dragged around a diving goalie in Mitch Gillam for the goal.

The Blades added another goal just five minutes later off of an almost identical play with Harris taking a shot from the slot that Gillam believed he had stopped,  but again bounced to the outside and Harris steered the puck into the net for the goal to  make it 2-0 Florida.  Gillam would be pulled for the time being after allowing two goals on 11 shots.  He was temporarily replaced by Kris Joyce, who was signed as an emergency ATO earlier in the day.

Moments later, the Solar Bears answered with 6:26 remaining in the first period on the power play.  Denver Manderson was able to get a shot past Florida netminder Anthony Peters who was screened in front to put the score at 2-1.

Though the Blades took little time to answer scoring a little over a minute later Brendan O’Donnell received a pass from John McCarron in the slot and roofed it on the rookie Joyce to give Florida a two-goal advantage again.

the Blades would score off a selfless pass by Zack Kamrass who had a lane to shoot but instead sent the puck over to John McCarron who went bar down for the goal making it 4-1 late in the first period and it would stay that way as the teams headed to the intermission.

Mitch Gillam was back in net to start the second period of play, replacing Kris Joyce after he faced three shots and let up two goals in the first period.

Moments after receiving a high-stick from Chris Crane, Matt Berry got some vengeance in the form of a goal with 3:52 left in the period.  Following a Brendan O’Donnell shot that just barely missed the net, the puck careened off the boards to the side of the net to Berry who would bury the puck behind Gillam making it a 5-1 game heading into the second intermission.

The Solar Bears would get on the board at 18:27 of the third off a rebound that found its way to Shane Conacher who sent a pass to Milos Bubella who chipped it in, cutting the Blades lead to three early in the third.

In desperation the Solar Bears would pull Gillam for the extra man with 3:52 remaining, landing him on the bench for the second time this game. Although Brant Harris was having none of it as he slid one from deep out into the empty net to put Florida out in font 6-2.

However the Solar Bears on the ensuing play would get some late goals from Daniel Maggio and Joe Perry, but to no avail as the Blades would close this one out and force a game seven with a 6-4 victory.

Anthony Peters earned the win making 35 saves, while Gillam takes the loss allowing three goals on 31 shots faced.  Newcomer Kris Joyce allowed two goals on three shots in the contest.

Wednesday’s Game 7 is the third in the Everblades' 19-year history, and the first for the Solar Bears.  Game time is set for 7:30 p.m. at Germain Arena. The Wednesday game will feature $2 hot dogs, $2 draft beers and $2 wines all night!

South Division Semifinal Playoff ScheduleBest-of-Seven Series(Series tied 3-3)

Game 1:Wednesday, April 12, Orlando - 4 at Florida - 2 Game 2:  Friday, April 14, Orlando - 3 at Florida - 2  Game 3:  Thursday, April 20,  Florida - 5 at Orlando - 4 (OT) Game 4:  Saturday, April 22, Florida - 0 at Orlando - 3Game 5:  Sunday, April 23, Florida - 5 at Orlando - 1Game 6:  Tuesday, April 25, Orlando - 4 at Florida - 6Game 7:  Wednesday, April 26 vs. Orlando, 7:30 p.m.  (Germain Arena)($2 draft beers, $2 wines & $2 hot dogs all night long!)

Ticket InformationPlayoff Tickets Now on Sale: Playoff game tickets may be purchased at the Florida Community Bank Box Office located at Germain Arena, or online via Ticketmaster by CLICKING HERE

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###

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