ESTERO, Fla. - The Florida Everblades improved to 3-0-0-0 after Friday’s 6-3 victory over the Greenville Swamp Rabbits (2-1-2-0). Rookie Patrick Harper continues his hot streak, as he scores four goals in three games.
New Faces: Tommy Novak, Tommy Marchin and Matt Petgrave all made their first appearances with the Blades at Greenville. All three players saw plenty of time on the ice in their debut.
Breaking the Ice: The Everblades finally broke through Greenville’s defense with a goal scored by Patrick Harper, a Nashville Predators’ draft pick, at the 15:09 mark. The play began in the corner as the puck popped out to Kile and he slid a pass to defenseman Logan Roe. Then, Roe setup Harper for the first tally of the game.
In his second start of the season, goaltender Cam Johnson handled a flurry of shots, as Greenville had a strong offensive presence towards the end of the first period. Johnson finished the period with 11 saves.
Greenville Responds: Greenville tied the game early into the second period with a goal by Karch Bachman, his first professional goal. At the 9:49 mark, the Swamp Rabbits took the lead with a rebound by Greg Meireles. This is the first time the Everblades have trailed in the 2020-21 season.
Late in the second period, forward Cameron Hebig tied the game on a one-time shot off of a pass from defenseman Stefan Leblanc on the power play. The Everblades patiently kept possession in their offensive half until the opportunity arose for the one-time blast.
Cole Smith registered his first professional goal only 4:43 minutes into the third period. The Swamp Rabbits failed to clear out the puck and Smith was able to capitalize on this opportunity with a top corner snipe.
Opening the Floodgates: After Smith’s tally, the Everblades scored four unanswered goals. Off of a power play, forward Michael Huntebrinker scored his second goal of the season from a rebound (11:59). Forward Tanner Jeannot scored his first professional goal on a shorthand halfway through the third period, extending the Everblades lead over the Swamp Rabbits to 5-2 (10:42).
With 3:37 left in the third period, Greenville responded with a tally by Nick Poehling. At the end of the third period, the Swamp Rabbits left an empty net to try to gain some ground with Florida. However, Harper capitalized on the empty net and sniped a tally from Florida’s own blue line (1:38). Harper’s goal was assisted by forward Blake Winiecki.
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