WHO: Florida Everblades at Maine MarinersWHERE: Cross Insurance Arena - Portland, MaineWHEN: Friday, November 5 at 7:15 pmBROADCAST: Watch every Florida Everblades game on FloHockey.TV. Listen to the exciting game action on ESPN Southwest Florida on 770 AM, 98.1 FM, 104.3 FM and online athttps://espnswfl.com. ESTERO, Fla. – The Florida Everblades and the Maine Mariners will face each other for the first time Friday night at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland, Maine. The opening face-off is scheduled for 7:15 pm. Friday’s contest is the start of a three-game road trip that will continue Saturday and Sunday, as the Blades head to Worcester, Mass.
THE OPPONENT: The ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Boston Bruins and the AHL’s Providence Bruins, the Mariners sport an overall record of 2-2-0 and currently sit in third place in the North Division. In their last game on Sunday, October 31, Maine skated to a 4-1 victory over the visiting Reading Royals. Four different Mariners scored goals and seven different players registered at least one point. Through three games, Nick Master (2 G, 3 A) and Lewis Zerter-Gossage (1 G, 4 A) are currently tied for the team lead with five points, while Master, Pascal Laberge and Mathew Santos lead all current Mariners with two goals apiece.
MORE ON MAINE: The Mariners rank among the ECHL’s early-season best on the power play and also on the penalty kill. Maine currently ranks second in the league in power play percentage, posting a 33.3% mark (4-for-12), while also ranking tied-fifth in penalty kill percentage at 91.7%, allowing just one goal in 12 shorthanded opportunities. The Mariners rank first among 27 ECHL teams with 38.0 shots per game.
THE SERIES: Friday’s game will be the first matchup between the Everblades and Mariners.
BLADES’ LAST TIME OUT: In a compelling Saturday night rubber match, the Everblades suffered a 4-3 shootout loss to the Norfolk Admirals at Hertz Arena.
The Everblades drew first blood for the third consecutive game after Ben Masella struck on a faceoff with 11:51 to play in the first period. John McCarron picked up the assist to extend his point streak to three games. Florida wasted no time adding to its1-0 lead in the second period with Jake Jaremko doubling the lead at the 3:17 mark, finishing off a tic-tac-toe play alongside Kody McDonald. Norfolk’s Darien Craighead buried a power-play goal and cut the Blades’ lead to 2-1.
At the 12-minute marker of the middle frame, Norfolk’s Eric Williams equalized the score at 2-2, before Everblade Levko Koper tapped put Florida ahead 3-2.
With a little over two minutes away from a regulation victory, the Everblades gave up a goal which took an unforeseen bounce off a skate and into the net during a clearing opportunity.
After seven minutes of scoreless overtime, the three-round shootout was decided in the favor of the Admirals after Williams capitalized in the final round to seal the Norfolk win, 4-3. The Mariners did not compete during the 2020-21 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but back in 2019-20, Maine compiled a 32-26-4 record which was good for 68 points and a fourth-place finish in the Eastern Conference’s North Division. Alex Kile, who originally signed to play with Maine for the 2020-21 season, came to Florida and played with the Blades after Maine did not compete during the campaign. He appeared in 69 games and recorded 25 goals and 26 assists to help lead Florida to a Brabham Cup.
LAST SEASON: In 2020-21, the Everblades skated to a 42-19-5-3 record and claimed first place in the ECHL’s Eastern Conference before advancing to the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The Mariners did not compete during the 2020-21 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but back in 2019-20, Maine compiled a 32-26-4 record which was good for 68 points and a fourth-place finish in the Eastern Conference’s North Division.
CAPTAIN EVERBLADE LEADS THE WAY: Florida captain John McCarron leads all Everblade skaters with five points and three assists. McCarron’s two goals joins Jake Jaremko and Levko Koper for the team lead. With 124 career regular-season goals while donning a Blades sweater, McCarron currently ranks third in franchise history. McCarron is just 21 goals shy of Reggie Berg’s all-time mark of 145. He also ranks fourth in Blades history with 165 regular-season assists, just 42 shy of Tom Buckley’s team record of 207.
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The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals.