Photo Credit Andy Camp
GLENS FALLS, NY – The Florida Everblades scored three power play goals to help earn a 7-3 victory over the Adirondack Thunder in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals at the Cool Insuring Arena Friday night. Florida now leads the best-of-seven series 3-1.
Florida got into penalty trouble early in the first period being forced to kill off four straight penalties. The ‘Blades held off the Thunder for the first three power play chances and found some offense on their fourth penalty kill of the opening frame.
Spencer Smallman carried the puck into the Adirondack end and delivered a pass across to Matt Mackenzie. Mackenzie faked a shot which forced the Thunder defense to slide past him. Mackenzie then delivered a pass to Stephen MacAulay who deked to the backhand at the top of the crease and slid the puck around goaltender Drew Fielding.
Moments later, the Everblades were awarded their first power play of the night and they made it count. Zack Kamrass hammered a shot from the center point that hit the skate of a Thunder defender and sharply redirected into the net for the tally to give the ‘Blades a 2-0 edge.
Adirondack cut the lead in half at 5:41 of the second period. Ryan Schmelzer skated down the right wing and delivered a pass across the crease intended for Terrance Wallin. However, the puck hit off the body of an Everblades defenseman and it banked into the Florida net for the goal to put the score at 2-1.
Florida connected for its second power play strike at 13:10 of the second period. Michael Kirkpatrick’s slapshot from the circle was stopped by Fielding, but the rebound bounced to Dave Dziurzynski who buried the rebound into the net to give the ‘Blades another two-goal advantage.
Nearly four minutes later, the Everblades scored their third power play tally, when Sam Warning buzzed to the left wing circle and sniped a shot in the top corner past the glove of Fielding to extend the Florida lead to 4-1. The goal signaled the end of Fielding’s night after allowing four goals on 25 shots. Olivier Mantha entered the game in a relief effort.
The ‘Blades continued their assault at 4:35 of third, when Michael Kirkpatrick centered a pass to the top of the crease to Mitchell Heard. Heard made contact with the puck and slipped it through Mantha’s five-hole for to deliver Florida’s fifth goal of the game.
A little more than a minute later, Florida made it 6-1, when Steven Lorentz put back a rebound from a Brett Bulmer shot to give the Florida a commanding third period edge.
Adirondack finally got a spark at 11:52 on a great individual effort from Troy Bourke. Bourke carried the puck to the front of the net while working off a check from a Florida defender. As he skated to the top of the crease, the puck hopped up in the air and Bourke batted it into the net past Ouellette to put the score at 6-2.
Three minutes later, Bourke set up a third Adirondack tally for netted by James Henry on the backside of the crease to the cut the deficit in half. However, any comeback bid was quickly quelled, when Brett Bulmer added an empty net goal at 17:23 of the final frame to secure the 7-3 Game 4 victory.
Ouellette earned his 10th win of the postseason making 37 saves on 40 shots faced, while Fielding takes the loss making 21 stops. Mantha allowed two goals on six shots in relief. The Everblades finished the game 3-for-4 on the power play, while posting an 8-for-9 mark on the penalty kill.
The two teams will meet again for Game 5 on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. at the Cool Insuring Arena. Fans can catch the game broadcast on 99.3 FM ESPN Radio, or online at 993espn.com
GAME 5 WATCH PARTYSaturday's Game 5 can be viewed at Bokampers located at Coconut Point in Estero. Game time is set for 7:00 p.m. but the party begins at 6:00 p.m.
2018 Kelly Cup Playoffs Schedule – Eastern Conference FinalsBest-of-Seven Series (Florida leads 3-1)
Game 1: Friday, May 11, Adirondack - 3 at FLORIDA - 4 Game 2: Saturday, May 12, ADIRONDACK - 3 at Florida - 2 (OT)Game 3: Wednesday, May 16, FLORIDA - 3 at Adirondack - 2Game 4: Friday, May 18, FLORIDA - 7 at Adirondack - 3Game 5: Saturday, May 19, Florida at Adirondack, 7:00 p.m. (Cool Insuring Arena)Game 6: Monday, May 21, Adirondack at Florida, 7:30 p.m. (Germain Arena)** Game 7: Wednesday, May 23, Adirondack at Florida, 7:30 p.m. (Germain Arena)**** If Necessary
2018-19 Ticket Packages are Currently on Sale! Full season as well as flexible partial plans are available. These packages will best fit your schedule and budget! To view pricing and benefits of all available ticket packages CLICK HERE
Discounted Group Tickets: Bring your group of 10 or more to a game at a discounted price! Group tickets are available for all home games. Fundraising opportunities are also available. For more information on group tickets, call 239-948-7825, or stop by the Everblades offices at Germain Arena Monday thru Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Purchase Single Game Playoff Tickets at the Florida Community Bank Box Office located at Germain Arena, or online via Ticketmaster by CLICKING HERE
The Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliateof the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes###