Impressive Third Period Leads 'Blades Past IceMen 5-3
JACKSONVILLE, FL - Brett Bulmer and Quentin Shore both scored a goal early on in the third period to propel the Florida Everblades (27-6-1-2, 57 pts) to a 5-3 win over the rival Jacksonville Icemen (10-21-3-2, 25 pts) Saturday night at the Veterans Memorial Arena. The Florida Everblades also end the first half of the ECHL season with the best record in the Eastern Conference.
Tyler Ganly put the 'Blades out front as he buried his fourth goal of the season. Moving down into the attacking zone, Brett Bulmer grabbed the puck behind the net. Bulmer's pass was picked up by Ganly who quickly buried his chance past the leg pad of Jacksonville goaltender Austin Lotz and into the net.
Jacksonville got themselves on the board as they capitalized on a point blank second chance opportunity. Moving around the 'Blades net, Garrett Klotz attempted a wraparound shot that was stopped by Martin Ouellette. Unable to cover the puck, the rebound was picked up and flipped into the net by an onrushing Elgin Pearce.
Jacksonville took their first lead of the night on a goal from Josh Erickson. Setting up shop in the attacking zone, Jacksonville cycled the puck around. Erickson snapped a quick shot from the blue line. Heading through traffic, the seeing-eye shot managed to find a hole and buried itself into the back of the net.
Matt Mackenzie banged a shot off the pads of Austin Lotz. Picking up the loose puck from behind the end line, Steven Lorentz quickly sliced his shot around the near side post and across the line for a goal.
The Icemen once again used a second chance opportunity to take a 3-2 advantage. On the penalty kill, Cameron Critchlow managed to force a turnover and quickly transitioned from defense to offense. Watching his initial shot get stopped by Martin Ouellette, Critchlow picked up his own rebound before banging this shot into the net.
The 'Blades tied the score at 3-3 just over a minute into the final frame. Receiving a pass from Tyler Ganly at the top of the left wing circle, Brett Bulmer rifled a quick shot towards goal. Austin Lotz attempted to cover the puck but inadvertently pushed the puck into his own net, giving Bulmer and the 'Blades the goal that they needed.
The 'Blades took a 4-3 lead just 42-seconds later as Quentin Shore buried another second chance opportunity into the net. Josh Wesley whipped a slap shot off the blocker of Austin Lotz. And the loose puck bounced to Quentin Shore who wasted no time flipping his shot into the open net.
The Everblades turned in a perfect third period performance, adding an empty net tally from Matt Mackenzie late on in the third period, the 'Blades earned a 5-3 victory over the rival Icemen.
Martin Ouellette made some great saves in goal for the Everblades and earns the win after stopping 18 of the 21 shots he faced. Austin Lotz suffers the loss in goal for Jacksonville after allowing four goals on 25 shots.
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