JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — With an opportunity to increase their winning streak to seven games, the Florida Everblades (16-5-4-0, 36 pts.) finish off a stretch of three games in three days with a matchup against the Jacksonville Icemen (14-10-1-0, 29 pts.) on Saturday night at Veterans Memorial Arena.
Last Time OutNathan Perkovich scored on the power play with 8:07 left in regulation to send the Everblades past the Greenville Swamps Rabbits, 4-2, on Friday night at Bon Secours Wellness Arena. Facing Greenville for the fourth straight game, Florida earned its fourth straight win against the Swamp Rabbits. Ben Masella, Zach Nastasiuk, and John McCarron also had tallies in the win, and Jeremy Helvig made 25 saves for his third straight road victory.
BOX SCORE | RECAP Players to WatchZach Nastasiuk (FLA) – The Barrie, Ontario, native tabbed a goal in Friday's 4-2 win over Greenville, his first goal back with the 'Blades since being reassigned by the AHL's Charlotte Checkers. The former Detroit Red Wings draft pick has 15 points (7g, 8a) in 23 games this year. He has three multi-point games this season.
Kris Newbury (JAX) - The veteran forward leads Jacksonville in scoring with 22 points and posted his second multi-goal game of the season on Friday night in a 2-1 overtime win over Atlanta. Newbury, who played 75 games in the NHL, has five multi-point games this year.
Series historyIncluding Saturday's game, Florida will have played more than a quarter of its games this season against the Icemen, with Saturday marking the seventh of the 13 meetings between the two teams this year. The 'Blades hold a commanding 17-1-2-0 all-time record against Jacksonville, but the Icemen earned their first-ever win against Florida the last time the two teams squared off at Veterans Memorial Arena, a 2-1 victory on Nov. 14.
- With Friday's win, Florida eclipsed its longest point streak in the last two seasons. The 'Blades 12-game point streak last year was the second-longest point streak of the season in the ECHL. The 'Blades longest winning streak last year was 10 games to end the season.
- The Everblades 13-game point streak is the longest in the ECHL this season and is tied for the longest in the league over the last two seasons. Florida surpassed the Toledo Walleye for the longest point streak of the year with Thursday's win. The Walleye's point streak of 11 games spanned from Oct. 20-Nov. 17 and included 10 wins. The Colorado Eagles, now in the AHL, and Fort Wayne Komets both had a 13-game point streak last season for the longest such streak of the 2017-18 ECHL campaign.
- Florida has scored first in a season-high four straight games and is one of just two teams in the 27-team ECHL that has not lost in regulation when scoring first this year. The 'Blades have a 10-0-3-0 record in such games. Tulsa (9-0-3-1) is the only other team without a regulation loss in games it has scored first.
- Ben Masella opened the scoring for Florida on Friday night in Greenville with his first goal with the 'Blades. Masella's first tally of the season was his first in 22 games dating back to March 18 of last season, his rookie season with the Worcester Railers.
- Despite ranking second in the ECHL in goals against per game (2.40), Florida's shutout of Greenville on Thursday was its first of the season. Coincidentally, the 'Blades last shutout also came against the Swamp Rabbits, a 3-0 win on March 28, 2018, in Estero, Florida.
- Phillips' shutout on Thursday was the third blank slate of his ECHL career and first since he blanked the Brampton Beast on Nov. 8, 2017, in a 5-0 win for the Jacksonville Icemen. The Michigan Tech product has an individual season-high five-game winning streak and has not suffered a regulation loss in eight straight games dating back to Nov. 17. Phillips ranks third in the ECHL with a 2.15 goals-against-average.
- Rookie defenseman Derek Sheppard has proven to be a valuable offensive weapon for the 'Blades. He is tied for fourth among league defensemen with seven goals and is tied for the league lead among blue liners with four power-play tallies. His five special-teams goals (4 PPG, 1 SHG) paces the ECHL for rear guards.
- Joe Cox had his five-game point streak snapped on Friday, but he is still tied for eighth in the ECHL in scoring (27 pts.) along with being tied for first in plus-minus rating (+20).
- In putting up 48 shots on goal last Wednesday in a 3-2 win over Jacksonville, Florida set a new team season-high for a game this year. That shots on goal total was the 'Blades highest since they put up 53 shots on goal in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Swamp Rabbits on Feb. 2, 2018.
- In addition to blitzing Jacksonville with shots on Dec. 5, Florida was also strong in suppressing the Icemen offensive attack. The 'Blades permitted a season-low 18 shots on goal to eclipse their previous season-low of 22 shots on goal against.
Next Up Florida endures its second straight stretch of three games in three days next weekend, and all three contests will pit the 'Blades against the Orlando Solar Bears. Florida travels to Orlando for tilts on Thursday and Friday before returning home on Saturday. —
Single-game tickets for all regular season home games are on sale now!Ticket packages for the 2018-19 season are still on sale! Become part of the Everblades Family with a Partial Season or a Flexible Voucher Package that fits your schedule and budget! All Ticket & Voucher Packages provide savings and special benefits! To view the Ticket & Voucher Package options CLICK HERE. SPECIAL OFFER! Purchase a new ticket package for the 2018-19 season and receive a $20 gift card to Ford’s Garage and an Everblades T-Shirt!Private Arena Tours are also available to select your 2018-19 season seats! Call the Everblades office at 239-948-7825 to schedule your tour today!
The Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes