ESTERO, Fla. – Tyler Irvine and Joe Pendenza netted two quick goals to start the game, but a last-minute Jacksonville score proved to be the difference maker as the Florida Everblades fell to the Jacksonville Icemen 5-3 Wednesday night at Hertz Arena. Florida took the regular-season series from Jacksonville by a 6-4-1-1 margin.
As the regular season dwindles down, South Carolina (44-21-4-1, 93 points) sits atop the South Division. The Everblades (37-24-4-5, 83 points) trail third place Greenville (38-23-8-1, 85 points) by two points and second place Jacksonville (42-23-3-1, 88 points) by five points.
Florida jumped out to a 2-0 lead just 68 seconds after the puck drop. It took just 37 seconds for Tyler Irvine to net his first goal as an Everblade in his team debut. Everblades points leader Joe Pendenza doubled the Blades lead at 1:27. Stefan Leblanc assisted on both goals, while Ben Masella and John McCarron picked up helpers on each goal, respectively. For McCarron, it was the 400th point of his career.
The Blades outshot Jacksonville 19-9 in the opening period, although the Icemen scored on a shorthanded goal late in the first to make it a 2-1 game heading into the second period.
Jacksonville recorded the only goal of the second period at 9:49 to tie the contest at 2-2. Shots on goal in the middle frame evened out compared to the first period, with each side taking eight.
In a fast paced third period, the Icemen broke the tie at the 6:49 mark to make it a 3-2 game. The Blades would score on a Logan Lambdin goal at 17:22 to tie the contest at 3-3. Unfortunately for the Blades, the tie would not hold for long as the Icemen’s Derek Lodermeier scored the last-minute go-ahead goal to push Jacksonville past the Blades. Jacksonville added a late empty-net goal to close out the scoring.
Despite the loss, Cam Johnson set the Everblades franchise season record for minutes played by a Blades goalie with 3,123 minutes. The previous record of 3,087 was set by Randy Petruk in 2016-17.
The Everblades continue their homestand at Hertz Arena on Friday, April 14 when they welcome the Atlanta Gladiators for a two-game set. Friday night's game will feature a Cam Johnson bobblehead giveaway courtesy of Waste Pro for the first 1,000 fans in attendance. For tickets click HERE and don’t forget kids eat free at Breakaway Sports Pub. For more information and reservations click HERE.
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2023 Kelly Cup Playoff Ticket packages and single-game tickets are now on sale. Join the Blades in their pursuit to defend the title! To learn more, call or text (239) 948-7825.
The 2023-24 season ticket plans are on sale now! Become a Blades 365 Member for the 2023-24 season and enjoy incredible savings and benefits! 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!
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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 everblades.mixlr.com.
The Florida Everblades are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Florida Panthers and the AHL's Charlotte Checkers.