Everblades sweep home series, take 2-0 lead versus Gladiators
In taking a 2-0 series lead over the Gwinnett Gladiators, things didn’t go exactly as planned for the Florida Everblades. In many ways, the two contests mirrored each other.
Both featured typical hard-hitting playoff hockey and timely scoring – especially for the Everblades – but for the Blades it was more about overcoming their mistakes.
In both games, the Blades found themselves having to play catch up to the Gladiators.
In the opening game held on Friday, it was a bad second period, then on Saturday night it was a terrible, penalty-filled first period, followed by a lifeless second, which found the Everblades trailing 2-0 heading into the final period of play. How they got there doesn’t matter so much as that they got there.
“It’s certainly important,” said coach Malcolm Cameron of being up 2-0 over the Gladiators after last Saturday’s 3-2 come-from-behind victory. “It’s especially important given that we got down 2-0 by being victims of our own self sabotage so to speak.”
It’s been obvious all season that the only thing that can beat this year’s Everblades squad is their own mistakes.
It was a problem that Cameron emphasized during the their preparation for the playoffs.
“We just can’t take that many penalties, and we know that,” said Cameron.
In all, the Blades found themselves playing at least one-man short for half of the first period Saturday night, allowing the Gladiators to post two power-play goals.
Ultimately, what matters is that the Blades over came.
“Once we settled in, we were patient and had a good third period (Saturday night),” Cameron said.
On Friday night, it was a solid first period and a dominant third period that propelled the Blades to victory.
The Blades now head to Gwinnett for games three, four and five, starting with back-to-back games tonight and Friday. They must win two in Gwinnett to prevent the series from returning to Germain Arena of games six and seven.
“It puts us in a good position (being up 2-0),” said Cameron, “but like I said to the guys after (Saturday’s game). It’s only one game. This game is over and you can’t get too high. We feel good about this one and then move on.”