WHO: Florida Everblades vs. Atlanta GladiatorsWHERE: Hertz Arena (Estero, FL)WHEN: Saturday, April 16 at 7:00 pmTICKETS: Purchase tickets for Saturday’s game and all future Everblades games HERE.
PROMOTIONS: With warm weather year-round, it's always tailgating season in Southwest Florida! Every Saturday night Blades home game starts with a tailgate, and live music will be performed by A Few Rough Edges from 5-7 pm! Also, be one of the first people at the arena to receive the Everblades team photo courtesy of FGCU!
Also, the Everblades host Pink in the Rink presented by Radiology Regional on Saturday, April 16. The Blades will don specialty pink jerseys during the game versus the Atlanta Gladiators. 4 Words Foundation is dedicated to helping with cancer awareness, education and patient financial assistance will be the recipient of the specialty jersey's proceeds from the auction! To view the auction, click HERE.
ESTERO, Fla. – One final regular-season matchup remains before the 2022 ECHL Kelly Cup Playoffs get underway next Friday at Hertz Arena and it is a big one. The Florida Everblades (41-20-6-4) and Atlanta Gladiators (43-23-4-1) will face off Saturday night with the South Division’s top seed in the balance. With both teams having 71 games in the books, the Blades hold a one-point edge atop the table, 92-91, and also lead in the all-important points percentage category, .648 to .641. The Blades need to earn at least one point in Saturday’s regular-season finale to lock up the division title.
THE OPPONENT: Following a stretch that saw three losses in four games, the Gladiators have righted the ship somewhat, earning three points in their last two games. Atlanta bested Jacksonville 5-3 last Saturday and fell to the Everblades in overtime on Friday. Over their last 10 contests, the Glads have posted a 5-4-1-0 mark, while watching Florida leapfrog them in the standings with a 7-3 ledger during that same stretch.
THE SERIES: The Everblades hold a 7-3-2-0 edge in 12 meetings this season, winning four of six games in Hertz Arena and posting a 3-1-2 record in games played in Duluth, Georgia. Florida has won the last three matchups, claiming a 3-2 home victory on January 22, earning a 7-1 road win last Wednesday and picking up a critical 3-2 overtime triumph on Friday. Over those 12 matchups, the Blades have outscored Atlanta 39-26.
LAST TIME OUT: Matteo Gennaro scored two goals, including the game winner 2:02 into overtime to give the Everblades an all-important 3-2 victory over Atlanta in front of 6,968 happy customers on Friday night. Trailing 2-1, Florida got a game-tying goal from Jake Jaremko at 8:39 of the third period to send the contest into extra time. Ben Masella assisted on both the game-tying and game-winning goals, while Alex Aleardi also picked up a pair of apples.
SHAKE AND BAKE WITH JAKE: With a goal and assist in Friday’s win over Atlanta, Jake Jaremko has moved into the series lead among players from both clubs with 12 points. Jaremko has collected three goals and nine assists to pace all skaters. Other top Everblades in the series include Blake Winiecki (2 G, 9 A) with 11 points, John McCarron (3 G, 7 A) with 10 points and Alex Aleardi (5 G, 4 A) with nine points. In goal, Parker Gahagen is 3-1-1 with a 1.99 GAA and a .916 save percentage in four games, while Tomas Vomacka is 1-1-1 with a 2.68 GAA and .920 save percentage in three outings.
GAHAGEN LOVES THE SWAMP: Everblades goaltender Parker Gahagen made 16 saves in Friday’s overtime win and extended his home unbeaten streak to five games. Gahagen has won three in a row at Hertz Arena and is 4-0-1-0 in his last five home contests. Dating back to February 19, Gahagen has compiled a 6-1-1-0 mark on home ice.
PLAYOFF CRUNCH TIME: While the Everblades and Gladiators will finish in the top two spots in some order, Jacksonville (39-27-3-2, 83 points, .585 points percentage) will be the third seed, as they sport a seven-point lead over Greenville, which has two games yet to play. The Swamp Rabbits (33-27-6-4, 76, .543) has the edge over Orlando (33-30-6-1, 73, .521) for the fourth and final playoff spot in the South. Greenville has two games at Norfolk remaining, while the Solar Bears have one at Jacksonville.
TOP-10 BLADES: John McCarron, Blake Winiecki, and Darik Angeli remain ranked among the ECHL top-10 in points. McCarron ranks seventh with 70 points, while Winiecki and Angeli are tied for eighth with 69 points. In the goals category, Winiecki is fourth in the league with 32 markers, while Alex Aleardi is tied for seventh with 30 goals, and McCarron and Angeli round out the top-10 with 29 lamp-lighters each.
CAPTAIN RECORD BOOK: Last Saturday at South Carolina, John McCarron set the Everblades career record for overall assists, recording his 231st helper on a Blake Winiecki goal in the third period. Captain Everblade eclipsed the standard of 230 assists originally established by Tom Buckley from 1999 through 2004. The assist also gave McCarron his 400th point in an Everblades sweater. McCarron now holds the Blades franchise records for points (400), goals (169) and assists (231). One more major franchise awaits, as McCarron sits just four regular-season assists behind Buckley’s regular-season assist mark of 207.
NEXT UP IN THE SWAMP: As one of the top two seeds in the South Division, the Everblades will have home-ice advantage for their opening-round, best-of-seven series in the 2022 ECHL Kelly Cup Playoffs. While the Blades’ opponent is yet to be determined, Florida will host game one on Friday, April 22 at 7:30 pm and game two on Saturday, April 23 at 7:00 pm. Tickets for games one and two are now available HERE.
JOIN THE FUN
2022 Kelly Cup Playoff Packages 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.
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.
The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Nashville Predators and the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals