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Blades Rally Halted in 5-3 Setback

Sunday, April 24th
Blades Rally Halted in 5-3 Setback

ESTERO, Fla. -- After conquering third period deficits in each of their last three games, the Everblades’ magic ran out on Saturday night with a 5-3 loss to the Greenville Swamp Rabbits at Hertz Arena. The defeat evened up the best-of-seven series at one game apiece in Round One of the 2022 Kelly Cup Playoffs presented by Lexus Dealers of Southwest Florida.

The evening kicked off with Chris McKay locating Florida’s first goal at 9:31 of the opening period. Joe Pendenza’s assist represented his third point of the series after posting a goal and one helper in Friday’s series opener. Goaltender Parker Gahagen kept away the Swamp Rabbits through three penalty kills to keep the Blades up 1-0 at the first intermission.

The story of the second period was Greenville’s special teams success. The Swamp Rabbits jumped ahead 2-1 on man-advantage goals between Alec Rauhauser (4:48) and Ben Freeman (6:51). Both marks were assisted by Liam Pecoraro and Alex Ierullo. Kevin McKernan added in a full-strength tally for good measure 2:35 later as the Swamp Rabbits increased their lead to 3-1. Greenville continued to showcase their offensive strength with a shorthanded goal courtesy of Joe Gatenby for his first in a Swamp Rabbits uniform. 

Just when they needed to turn the table, the Everblades came firing right back before the intermission with Xavier Bouchard (16:02) and Alex Aleardi (18:48) both slamming the puck home. After 40 minutes of regulation, the Blades pulled the score to 4-3 in a middle stanza that saw six combined lamp lighters. It would become the fourth consecutive game that the Blades entered the third period trailing on the scoreboard despite winning each of the previous three.

Even with a 40-24 advantage in shots on net at the end of regulation, the Everblades were unable to find the equalizing goal in the final period. Freeman took advantage of Florida’s empty net for his second of the night with 1:14 remaining in the game. The unassisted strike on the penalty kill rounded out the game with the 5-3 Greenville victory.

The series between the Everblades and Swamp Rabbits shifts to Greenville for Game 3 on Wednesday, April 27 at Bon Secours Wellness Arena. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05pm and the action can be followed on Mixlr at www.mixlr.com/florida-everblades and FloHockey.TV.

If necessary, the Everblades will host Game 6 of the series on Monday, May 2. The action begins at 7:30pm inside Hertz Arena and tickets can be purchased HERE.

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JOIN THE FUN

2022 Kelly Cup Playoff Tickets are now on sale. Join the Blades in their pursuit for a second Kelly Cup title! To learn more, call or text (239) 948-7825 or purchase HERE

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 2022-23 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.

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

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 Mixlr at www.mixlr.com/florida-everblades

Stay up to date by following the Florida Everblades on Social Media with all the latest news, scores and promotions on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Tiktok, and Twitter.

The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals.

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