ORLANDO, Fla. – On Saturday, October 17, 1998, the Florida Everblades skated past the host Charlotte Checkers 5-3 to earn the franchise’s first-ever victory under the direction of head coach Bob Ferguson in the second game of the Everblades’ inaugural season. Some 8,471 days later, on Sunday, December 26, 2021, in the franchise’s 24th season, the Everblades topped the host Orlando Solar Bears 5-0 under the guidance of sixth-year head coach Brad Ralph to claim the 1,000th victory in organization history. With the milestone win, the Everblades improved to 1,000-495-54-113 (.652) all-time.
This milestone win was never in doubt, as three different Everblades tickled the twine in the opening period. Coming out firing shortly after the opening faceoff, Nathan Perkovich put the Blades on the board just 1:59 into the contest, scoring on a wrist shot off a feed from Kody McDonald for his fourth goal of the season.
After Perkovich’s marker, two Blades fresh off eight-day recalls with the AHL’s Milwaukee Admirals paid immediate dividends. First, it was Jake McLaughlin at the 8:11 mark as he connected off beautiful passes from Joe Pendenza and Alex Aleardi. Next, Bobo Carpenter struck on the power-play in the final minute of the period, riding assists by Levko Koper and Alex Aleardi to give the Blades an insurmountable 3-0 advantage. McLaughlin’s goal was his second of the season, while Carpenter picked up his eighth tally of the campaign.
Neither team scored in the second period, but Kyle Neuber would have none of that in the final period. Neuber picked up his third goal of the season with a scoring strike just 33 seconds into the frame off assists by McLaughlin and Winiecki to put the Blades on top 4-0.
Captain Everblade John McCarron got in on the party, scoring his 150th goal in an Everblade sweater, including playoff games, to extend the Florida lead to 5-0 at 9:34 of the final stanza. Winiecki became the first Everblade to notch three assists in a game this season, while Jake Jaremko added an assist for the fourth straight games. McCarron and Jaremko extended their point streaks to eight games and seven games, respectively.
Tomas Vomacka made the most of his first start since December 10, registering 25 saves en route to his first professional shutout. Vomacka improved to 4-2-1-0 on the year with his second straight win.
The Everblades and Solar Bears will conclude their home-and-home series in Southwest Florida on Wednesday, December 29 at 7:30 pm. As local hockey fans have come to know and love, at every Wednesday home game, join us for $3 Bud Light drafts and $3 John Morrell hot dogs! Also, all college students can purchase a $5 ticket to the game at the Hertz Arena box office with a valid student ID. Make plans to be a part of the action and purchase tickets for all future Everblades games HERE.
Read more about the Blades’ busy promotional schedule and great deals HERE.
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Become a member of the Florida Everblades family by securing a great seat location and big savings with a Blades 365 Membership!
Purchase a new Voucher 12 package that allows you to use 12 tickets in any quantity during the 2021-22 season to earn the exclusive benefits of being a Blades 365 Member! To view the Blades 365 Membership savings, benefits and options click HERE.
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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The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals.