WHO: Florida Everblades vs. Orlando Solar BearsWHERE: Hertz Arena (Estero, Fla.)WHEN: Friday, March 18 at 7:30 pmTICKETS: Purchase tickets for Friday’s game and all future Everblades games HERE.PROMOTIONS: During each Friday home game of the 2021-22 season, fans can enjoy the action with a 239 ticket package, which pays tribute to Southwest Florida's area code and provides a great deal! You get two premium seat tickets, two autographed programs, and two cinnamon sugar pretzels for just $39! Tickets can also be purchased HERE.
Friday night will also be Blades Bobblehead Giveaway Night. Be one of the first 1,000 fans in attendance to receive a John McCarron and Waste Pro Man dual bobblehead, presented by Waste Pro. Take a photo with the Kelly Cup located by section 108 during the game as well!
Also, as a thank you to our first responder heroes, frontline workers are eligible to receive a buy one, get one ticket offer for all remaining Friday home games while supplies last. Get your tickets HERE.
In addition, join us and score for a great cause! St. Matthew’s House will be accepting donations of non-perishable food and household items. In addition, the world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales will be outside prior to the game!BROADCAST: Watch every Florida Everblades game on FloHockey.TV. Listen to the exciting game action on MIxlr by visiting www.mixlr.com/florida-everblades.
ESTERO, Fla. – The Florida Everblades look to rebound following a 4-3 overtime loss to the Jacksonville Icemen Wednesday night with the first of two games over the visiting Orlando Solar Bears Friday night at Hertz Arena. The in-state rivals will meet up again Saturday night as the Blades put the wraps on a seven-day homestand, the longest of the year.
THE OPPONENT: The Orlando Solar Bears return to Hertz Arena once again for back-to-back games on Friday and Saturday. The ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning and the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch, the Solar Bears (29-25-4-0, 62 points) sit comfortably in fourth place in the South Division with a .534 points percentage, some nine points ahead of fifth-place Greenville which sports a .482 points percentage in the race for the final South Division spot in the upcoming Kelly Cup Playoffs. Orlando has dropped three straight games to three different South Division teams and has posted a 4-5-1-0 mark over the past 10 contests, allowing the Swamp Rabbits to narrow the gap with seven wins in their last 10 games.
THE SERIES: In 11 meetings against the Bears this season, the Everblades have posted a 6-4-1-0 record, including a 3-3 tally in games played at Hertz Arena and a 3-1-1 mark in games played in Orlando. In the teams’ last meeting on Saturday, March 12, the Blades picked up a 6-5 victory to run their winning streak against the Bears to three straight games. Joe Pendenza registered his first ECHL hat trick, while John McCarron potted two goals and Jake McLaughlin chipped in with three assists.
LAST TIME OUT: Despite scoring three goals in the first period and jumping out to a 3-1 lead on Wednesday night, the Everblades (32-17-5-4) took a 5-4 defeat in overtime at the hands of the Jacksonville Icemen (33-19-2-2). Three different Blades – Alex Aleardi, Zach Solow, Dylan Vander Esch (x2) – scored goals, while eight different players logged assists. Aleardi and Vander Esch both registered two points in the contest. While the setback in extra time snapped a two-game winning streak, it extended the Blades’ streak of tallying at least one point in the standings to three consecutive contests.
WE CARE BEARS: In 11 games against Orlando, John McCarron leads all Everblades skaters with 10 goals and 16 points. Blake Winiecki has collected four goals and a team-high 10 assists for 14 points in 10 games. Joe Pendenza (7 G, 6 A) has chalked up 13 points, while Levko Koper (2 G, 7 A) has notched seven points. In net, Parker Gahagen is 2-1 in three starts with a 1.35 GAA and a .960 save percentage. Tomas Vomacka has made a team-high four starts, posting a 1-2-1 record with a 3.04 GAA and a .902 save percentage.
THE MIGHTY, MIGHTY GOAL BROTHERS: John McCarron and Blake Winiecki have potted 26 and 25 goals, respectively, making them the only ECHL teammates with 25-plus goals this season. Mc Carron sits one goals behind Iowa’s Kris Bennet, the ECHL goal leader with 27. With Alex Aleardi tied for seventh with 24 markers and Joe Pendenza tied for 12th place with 23, the Everblades sport four players in the league’s top-12, making them the only ECHL squad with two or more among the dirty dozen.
NOT AARP, BUT THE OTHER OVER-55 CLUB: In addition to Blake Winiecki and John McCarron who have 60 points and 59 points, respectively, Joe Pendenza has soared into a tie for eighth place with 56 points. The Everblades trio is the only set of three teammates with 55 or more points this season, and is just one of two groups of three teammates with more than 50 points thus far.
WE LEAD AND OTHERS FOLLOW: With four 20-goal scorers, three players with 30-plus assists and three skaters in the 50-point club, the Everblades are featured prominently across the top statistical categories in the ECHL. In the goals category, John McCarron (2nd, 26), Blake Winiecki (T3rd, 25), Alex Aleardi (T7th, 24) and Joe Pendenza (T12th, 23) lead the way. On the assists leaderboard, Winiecki (T8th, 35), McCarron (T13th, 33) and Pendenza (T13th, 33) have their name in bright lights. Putting it all together and looking at total points, Winiecki (4th, 60), McCarron (T5th, 59) and Pendenza (T8th, 56) are each in the chase for the league lead. Xavier Bouchard is second in the ECHL with a plus-27 rating, four out of the top spot.
JOIN THE FUN
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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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 at https://espnswfl.com or on MIxlr by visiting www.mixlr.com/florida-everblades.
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The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals.