WHO: Florida Everblades at Orlando Solar Bears
WHERE: Amway Center - Orlando, Fla.
WHEN: Saturday, April 3 at 7:00 p.m.
BROADCAST: Watch every Florida Everblades game on FloHockey.TV. Listen to the exciting game action on the Everblades Broadcast Network at WJBX News, Talk & More on 104.3 FM, 101.5 FM and AM 770, plus online at wjbxnewstalk.com.
ORLANDO, Fla. - The Florida Everblades (31-10-0-2) meet the Orlando Solar Bears (20-17-3-1) tonight in the last of three matchups this week at Amway Center. Florida won the first two games of this week’s series with a pair of 3-2 victories on Thursday and Friday. The Everblades are 14-7-0-0 this season when playing on the road and are 7-5-0-0 when playing in Orlando.
Last Time Out: Opposite from Thursday, it was the Everblades that took control of the game first. Two and half minutes into the second period, Marcus Vela opened the scoring for the Blades when he tipped in a point shot from Stefan Leblanc to give Florida a 1-0 lead. Hugo Roy followed a few minutes later with his sixth tally of the season to put the Everblades on top 2-0.
Orlando got one back in the second period off a quick one-timer from JJ Piccinich in the low slot. In response, Florida’s Michael Huntebrinker scored his league-best 23rd goal of the season on a breakaway to give the Everblades a 3-1 advantage. Tyler Bird scored in the third period for Orlando to make it 3-2, but Florida held on in order to cement rookie goaltender Jordan Papirny’s first professional win. Papirny finished with 38 saves on 40 shots in his pro debut.
Scouting the Solar Bears: Aaron Luchuk leads Orlando with 39 points (12g-27a). The Bears are playing without their leading goal-scorer Jake Coughler. Coughler has 14 tallies on the season and has been placed on Orlando’s injured reserve list. Rookie forward Joe Garreffa has put together a solid freshman campaign with 29 points (10g-19a) in 28 ECHL games. Garreffa has played 10 games with the Solar Bears since coming over from the Allen Americans (24-13-2-0) and has notched one goal and seven assists.
Top Guns: Florida’s Michael Huntebrinker leads the ECHL with 23 goals on the season. The forward struck most recently in the second period against Orlando on Friday. Everblades forward John McCarron is tied for second place in the ECHL with 19 tallies on the season after his goal last Friday against the Nailers. Huntebrinker’s 23 goals this season is already a career best. The 28-year-old had previously scored 20 goals in both the 2017-18 season with the Reading Royals and last season with the Everblades. McCarron’s career-best goal total came in the 2017-18 season when he put up 29 with Florida.
Standings: After last night’s victory, the Everblades continue to lead the Eastern Conference and the entire ECHL with a .744 points percentage. Orlando fell back to fifth place in the East after last night’s loss. With a .537 points percentage, the Solar Bears are just one percentage point behind the South Carolina Stingrays (17-14-6-3, .538) who hold the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Blades Add Woolf to Blue Line: Rookie defenseman Dylan Woolf got his first taste of the pros last night against Orlando. The 24-year-old was paired up with Stefan Leblanc on the blue line for Florida. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound blueliner just finished his fourth year with the St. Lawrence University Saints of the Eastern College Athletic Conference. In his senior season, Woolf notched three points (1g-2a) in 12 appearances. A native of Victoria, Minnesota, Woolf served as the Saints’ captain for three seasons. The Saints most recently won the ECAC Hockey title in 2020-21.
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Purchase a new Ticket Package or Flexible Voucher Package for the Blades 2020-21 and/or 2021-22 season and receive a $20 gift card to Ford’s Garage along with an Everblades tote bag! To view the Blades 365 Membership savings, benefits and options click HERE.
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Discounted Group Packages are also available for Groups of 10 or more! To reserve your group for an upcoming home game, call or text the Everblades Front Office at (239) 948-7825.
Make it a Suite Night with the Everblades! A Luxury Suite and Party Suite are available at a limited number of Everblades home games this season. For the latest availability on Suites, call or text the Everblades Front Office at (239) 948-7825.
Everblades put the FUN in FUNdraising! There is no handling of money or tickets and no limit to the amount of money your group can make with the Everblades easy-to-run online Fundraiser! For more information, or to reserve a Fundraiser Night at an Everblades regular season home game, call or text (239) 948-7825.
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Watch every Florida Everblades game on the new home for ECHL hockey atFloHockey.TV.Listen to the exciting game action on WJBX News, Talk & More on 104.3 FM, 101.5 FM and AM 770, plus online at wjbxnewstalk.com. In addition, some Blades Broadcasts can be heard on 99.3 ESPN or online at993espn.com.
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The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals.