Written by Robert Molnar
ORLANDO, FL – Ryan Massa stopped all 42 shots faced to lead the Orlando Solar Bears to a 3-0 win over the Florida Everblades in Game 4 of the South Division Semifnals Saturday night at the Amway Center. Orlando now leads the best-of-seven series 3-1.
The Solar Bears took a 1-0 lead midway through the opening period off a fantastic shot from Justin Buzzeo. Buzzeo collected a pass from Daniel Maggio and cut towards the goal. Firing his chance from an extremely tight angle down low, Buzzeo sent his shot over the back of Everblades goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic and into the0 roof of the net.
In the second period, both the ‘Blades and Solar Bears would earn their fair share of chances. However, some great goaltending play from both Everblades goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic and Orlando’s Ryan Massa kept the period scoreless throughout, sending the teams into the third period with the ‘Blades trailing by just one goal.
In the third, the Bears and ‘Blades knew that the next goal scored in this contest would be an extremely important one. However, both goaltenders continued to deny each team of their scoring chances, with the third period reaching its halfway point with the ‘Blades still trailing by only a single goal.
Orlando extended their lead to 2-0 when Shane Concacher managed to corral the puck in the corner of the attacking zone before firing it towards the front of goal. The puck ping-ponged off the skate of an Everblades defenseman in front and clipped past the pad of Alex Nedeljkovic for the goal.
Despite a late push from the Everblades to get back into the game, they could not find a way to beat Ryan Massa. Denying the ‘Blades at every opportunity late in the contest, Orlando added an empty net goal from Taylor Doherty with just over a minute remaining in the contest to clinch the 3-0 shutout victory.
The game however, did not end quietly. Following the empty net goal, a massive line brawl would ensue between the Solar Bears and Everblades with most of the skaters and both goaltenders coming to blows. Following the brawl, both Ryan Massa and Alex Nedeljkovic would be ejected from the game and would be replaced in goal for the final minute by Mitch Gillam and Anthony Peters.
Ryan Massa was absolutely stellar in goal for the Solar Bears stopping all of the 42 shot faced. However, because he was tossed from the game following the skirmish, he will earn a shared shutout with Mitch Gilliam who finished the game. Alex Nedeljkovic was equally brilliant in goal for the Everblades, but does suffer the loss after allowing two goals on 33 shots..
Game 5 of this best-of-seven series takes place tomorrow at the Amway Center beginning at 4:00 p.m. Fans can also catch the game broadcast on WJBX News, Talk & More on 101.5-FM.104.3-FM, 770-AM or by CLICKING HERE. Fans can also watch the game online at ECHL.TV
South Division Semifinal Playoff ScheduleBest-of-Seven Series(Orlando leads 3-1)
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 at Orlando, 4:00 p.m. (Amway Center)Game 6: Tuesday, April 25 vs. Orlando, 7:30 p.m. (Germain Arena)** Game 7: Wednesday, April 26 vs. Orlando, 7:30 p.m. (Germain Arena)****If Necessary
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.comPlayoff Tickets Now on Sale: Playoff game tickets may be purchased at the Florida Community Bank Box Office located at Germain Arena, or online 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###