SAVANNAH, Ga. – A pair of first-period power-power goals by Oliver Chau and Joe Pendenza, coupled with a game-winner off the stick of Sean Josling early in the third frame was the magic formula, as the Florida Everblades topped the Savannah Ghost Pirates by a 4-2 margin Friday night at Enmarket Arena.
Savannah may have scored the opening goal, but the opening period went the way of the Everblades. Ross Armour’s third goal of the season gave the Ghost Pirates a 1-0 lead 7:43 into the contest, but Chau and Pendenza potted power-play goals at 9:57 and 11:30 respectively to give the Blades a 2-1 lead which would hold after the opening 20 minutes. Each assisted on the other’s goal, while Patrick Holway picked up a helper on both goals.
Following the busy first period, neither team managed to score in the middle stanza, but Simon Pinard’s 21st goal of the season evened the score at 2-2 for Savannah just 1:10 into the third period.
Josling followed in short order, regaining the lead for Florida just over four minutes later, putting the Everblades ahead 3-2 at the 5:12 mark, with Cam Hausinger earning the assist thanks to a nifty pass from below the goal line. The goal would prove to be Josling’s first game-winner of the season.
Bobo Carpenter added an empty-net marker with 35 seconds to play to seal the 4-2 victory for the Everblades, as Chau gained his second assist and third point of the night.
Savannah claimed a 34-23 edge in shots on goal, but Evan Cormier (3-4-1-0) made 32 saves to earn the win in goal for the Everblades. Michael McNiven (2-4-2-0) logged 18 saves in a losing effort for the Ghost Pirates.
The Everblades will close out the road trip Saturday night against the South Carolina Stingrays at 6:00 p.m. in the North Charleston Coliseum. Following the Christmas holiday, the Blades return to Hertz Arena for a big series versus the Greenville Swamp Rabbits on Thursday, December 28 and Friday, December 29. Visit floridaeverblades.com for more information and to purchase tickets.
- Friday’s victory came in the first of 12 meetings between the Everblades and Ghost Pirates this season. The teams will lock horns for five straight games in January, with the Blades hosting three on January 10, 12 and 13, and the Savannah entertaining Florida on January 20 and 21. In last year’s inaugural season for the Ghost Pirates, the Everblades posted a 4-2-0-1 record, going 2-0-0-0 at Hertz Arena and 2-2-0-1 in the Peachtree State.
- Oliver Chau followed his three-assist performance on Wednesday his second straight three-point game. Chau notched his first goal since December 6 against South Carolina in Hertz Arena. With three points Friday night, Chau has six points in two games after a four-game stretch without a point.
- Joe Pendenza, who tied for the team lead with eight points on three goals and five assists against Savannah last season, scored a goal for the second consecutive game. Pendenza’s goal was his second power-play tally in as many contests, as he picked up a marker Wednesday night in Jacksonville. In nine December games, Pendenza has eight points on two goals and six assists.
- Sean Josling’s third-period goal snapped a two-game string without a point, but his last two goals came in the final frame. Josling last struck in the third frame back on December 15 against Orlando.
- Patrick Holway’s two-assist effort gave him three helpers in the last two games following a stretch of six games with just one goal. It was his second two-helper outing in December, as he previously logged a pair of assists on December 1 at Adirondack.
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