ORLANDO, Fla. – Cam Darcy posted a hat trick and collected four points, while five different players scored goals to lead the Florida Everblades to an exciting 7-4 victory over the Orlando Solar Bears Thursday night at Amway Center. No less than 11 different skaters earned at least one point for the victorious Blades, as Florida rallied from a 4-2 deficit by scoring five unanswered goals over the game’s final 43 minutes. A wide-open first period saw both teams combine for seven goals, as Orlando jumped out to a 2-0 lead on two scores by Michael Brodzinski in the first 3:08 of play. Darcy and Joe Pendenza answered for the Everblades with goals that knotted the score at 2-2 by the midpoint of the frame.
Continuing the trend of the teams scoring in twos, the Solar Bears regained a two-goal lead as markers by Brayden Guy and Hunter Fejes put the hosts back on top 4-2, before Robert Calisti brought the Blades within one score, 4-3 after a busy opening 20 minutes of play.
Calisti’s goal was the first of four consecutive tallies that put the Everblades ahead 6-4 after two periods, as James McEwan, Darcy, and Blake Winiecki all collected second-period goals, each of the three coming by way of the power play.
In the third period, Darcy completed the hat trick with his fifth goal of the season at the 7:15 mark, as the Everblades ended the contest with five unanswered goals.
Stefan Leblanc picked up three assists for the Everblades, while McEwan and Winiecki added assists in their two-point games.
Cam Johnson registered 31 saves to earn his 12th victory over the season, as the ECHL All-Star held the Solar Bears scoreless for the game’s final 44:43.
The teams will lock horns once again at Hertz Arena Friday night at 7:00 p.m.
SCORING SUMMARY – Click for full box score 1st Period 2:53 Orlando M. Brodzinski 5 PP (M. Cajkovic, G. Mismash) 3:08 Orlando M. Brodzinski 6 PP (B. Barone) 3:53 Florida C. Darcy 3 (K. Neuber) 9:58 Florida J. Pendenza 6 (J. McEwan) 11:50 Orlando B. Guy 5 PP (M. Brodzinski, M. Cajkovic) 15:17 Orlando H. Fejes 2 (T. Langan) 17:00 Florida R. Calisti 7 (L. Koper, C. Darcy) 2nd Period 1:09 Florida J, McEwan 2 PP (L. Kälble, J. Smith) 2:47 Florida C. Darcy 4 PP (S. Leblanc, B. Winiecki) 19:24 Florida B. Winiecki 6 PP (S. Leblanc, X. Cormier) 3rd Period 7:15 Florida C. Darcy 5 (S. Leblanc) GOALTENDERS Florida – Cam Johnson 31 Saves Orlando – Brad Barone 7 Saves; Jimmy Poreda 22 Saves TEAM STATISTICS Shots on Goal – Florida 36, Orlando 35 Power Plays – Florida 3-8, Orlando 3-5 Shorthanded Goals – Florida 0, Orlando 0 Penalties (Minutes) – Florida 6 (12), Orlando 10 (20)
NEWS AND NOTES
With his hat trick and four-point game on Thursday, Cam Darcy has registered a team-high nine points versus the Solar Bears this season, with three goals and six assists.
Darcy’s hat trick was the first by an Everblade since Joe Pendenza made the hats rain down on Hertz Arenas back March 12, 2022 against these same Orlando Solar Bears.
Stefan Leblanc’s three-assist effort was the third by an Everblade this season, joining Oliver Chau and Xavier Cormier.
Thursday’s victory snapped a two-game string of setbacks for the Everblades. Despite earning a point in Wednesday’s overtime loss to Jacksonville, the Everblades had entered play with back-to-back losses for the first time this season and the first time since March 2/4, 2022.
With the win, Florida improved to 3-2-1-0 record versus Orlando this season. Following a regulation loss and an overtime loss at Amway Center in November, the Blades took two of three from the Solar Bears in a three-game set at Hertz Arena spanning December 14-21. Florida has won the last two meetings of the South Division rivals by a 12-7 margin.
Cam Johnson improved to 3-1-1-0 in five starts against Orlando.
The Everblades will wrap up a three-games-in-three-days stretch with the final home game of the 2022 calendar year as the Orlando Solar Bears skate into Hertz Arena on Friday, December 30 at 7:30 p.m. Following Friday night’s game, the Blades will take a break for five days before ringing in the new year with a home game against the Greenville Swamp Rabbits on Wednesday, January 4 at 7:30 p.m.
On Friday night, Blades fans can take advantage of the popular 239 Friday Deals and pick up two tickets, two programs and a large, delicious popcorn for the extra special price of $39! In addition, kids 12 and under can eat free at Breakaway Sports Pub. All holiday games are brought to Everblades fans by Christmas Tree Shops.
Be sure and catch all the action 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 https://everblades.mixlr.com.
JOIN THE FUN
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.
Group Packages are available for a group of 10 or more!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.
Grab the newest and hottest Everblades merchandise by checking out the entire collection that is available online by visiting shop.floridaeverblades.com or at the Hertz Arena Pro Shop!
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 everblades.mixlr.com.
The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Florida Panthers and the AHL's Charlotte Checkers.