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PREVIEW: 'Blades visit Icemen to finish home-and-home series

Friday, March 6th
PREVIEW: 'Blades visit Icemen to finish home-and-home series

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Aiming for a six-game winning streak, the Florida Everblades (42-13-3-2, 89 pts.) finish a home-and-home series against the Jacksonville Icemen (22-29-5-1, 50 pts.) with a Friday night matchup at Veterans Memorial Arena. 

VITALS:Game 61: Everblades at Jacksonville IcemenWhen: 7 p.m. ETWhere: Veterans Memorial ArenaWatch: ECHL TVListen: WJBXSocial: Twitter | Instagram

Last time outBackstopped by a 36-save performance from Cam Johnson, the Everblades improved to 8-1-0-1 against Jacksonville this season with a 3-1 victory at Hertz Arena on Wednesday. Florida's Kyle Neuber opened the scoring less than six minutes into the first period, and Darik Angeli scored on the power play less than 90 seconds into the third for what proved to be the game-winning goal. After Jacksonville cut the lead in half on a power-play goal by Bobby Lynch, Levko Koper insured the win with his 10th goal of the season for Florida. RECAP

Series At A GlanceAfter going nearly a month without seeing one another from Jan. 26-Feb. 20, the Everblades and Icemen will battle for the fifth time in the last 15 days on Friday. The Icemen are the Everblades' second-most played opponent this year behind only Orlando, which Florida faces 14 times. Since dropping the first two games of the season series, Florida has earned eight straight wins against Jacksonville, outscoring the Icemen by 20 goals (37-17) in those eight wins. Florida has an 11-3-1-1 all-time record in Jacksonville and is 30-4-2-1 overall against the Icemen since they joined the ECHL in the 2017-18 season. 

Players to WatchDerek Sheppard (FLA) -  After playing three games with Florida in mid-January, the second-year pro makes his return to the club on Friday. He has spent a majority of his second full pro season in the AHL with the Charlotte Checkers, tallying two goals and an assist in 23 games with the Checkers. Sheppard has racked up 11 multi-point games in his Everblades career and has 50 career ECHL points (18g, 32a) in 70 games. 

Bobby Lynch (JAX) -  The rookie forward notched his 13th goal of the season on Wednesday for Jacksonville's only goal of the game in its 3-1 loss. Lynch played last season in the USHL with the Muskegon Lumberjacks. He has 26 points this season for Jacksonville and has registered multiple points in six games, including his first career pro hat trick on Feb. 26 against Norfolk. The Grand Blanc, Michigan, native has five points (3g, 2a) in nine games against Florida. Road WarriorsFlorida is one of the league's best road teams this season and enters Friday with 19 victories away from Hertz Arena. The South Carolina Stingrays, which have 24 road wins, are the only ECHL club with more success in away games than Florida. The 'Blades and Stingrays are the only two teams that own road winning percentages greater than .700. 

Finishing TouchThe Everblades have outscored their opponents 7-2 in the third period of their last four games, continuing a season-long trend of having the upper hand in the final frame of regulation. Florida now owns a +22-goal differential in the third period, a goal differential that is the second-best in the league behind only the Allen Americans' +24-goal differential in the third period. 

First OrderOne key piece of Florida's current five-game winning streak has been scoring first. The 'Blades have tabbed the first goal in all five games of the streak and own the league's fifth-best winning percentage when striking for the first goal (.859). Only four other ECHL clubs have scored the first goal more times than Florida, which has tallied first in 32 contests this year. 

Next UpThe Everblades close out their sixth consecutive three-game week with a Saturday night matchup against the Greenville Swamp Rabbits. Faceoff is set for 7 p.m. at Hertz Arena.  

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2020 KELLY CUP PLAYOFF PACKAGESThe 'Blades are headed to the postseason for the 21st time in 22 seasons, and packages for the 2020 Kelly Cup Playoffs are now on sale! For more information on Everblades Playoff Packages, click HERE.

BLADES 365 MEMBERSHIPS Blades 365 Memberships are now on sale for the 2020-21 season! Get great seat locations, big savings and exclusive year-round experiences with a Blades 365 Membership!

Purchase a new Blades 365 Membership for the 2020-21 season and receive a $20 gift card to Ford’s Garage and an Everblades tote bag! To view the Blades 365 Membership savings, benefits and options click HERE.

FOLLOW THE 'BLADESStay up to date with all the latest in news, scores, and promotions by following the 'Blades on InstagramFacebook, and Twitter

The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and AHL's Milwaukee Admirals

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