Everblades surge, knot series 1-1
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Seven different Florida Everblades scored goals Tuesday night to defeat the Las Vegas Wranglers 7-2 in Game 2 of the Kelly Cup Championship series.
The win by the Blades ties the best-of-seven series at 1-1. The teams head to Germain Arena for Game 3 at 7:30 p.m. Friday. The Blades request fans wear white to Friday’s game for a “White Out.” The first 2,500 fans receive an Everblades T-shirt.
For the second straight night, the Wranglers struck first. A turnover in front led to Chris Francis backhanding a shot past John Muse from the low slot halfway through the first period to put he Wranglers up 1-0.
Nearly five minutes later, Las Vegas extended its lead to 2-0 on a goal by Judd Blackwater. Aaron Miller centered a pass to Blackwater who directed the puck past Muse for the goal.
The Blades turned the momentum in the second, scoring three unanswered goals. The first came when Mathieu Roy skated the puck to the slot uncontested and wristed a shot high past the glove of Wranglers netminder Joe Fallon.
Florida then knotted the game at 2-2 ona fortuitous bounce. Justin Shugg blasted a slapshot from the blue line that was lifted high over the net. The puck clipped of the end wall glass and bounced off the back of Fallon’s arm and trickled across the goal line.
The Blades took their first lead in the series on a power play goal by Matt Marquardt at 16:42 of the second. Marquardt one-timed a shot from the right wing circle that slipped past Fallon at the shortside post for the goahead marker. Florida took the 3-2 lead into the second break.
The Everblades refused to let up, orchestrating a dominating performance in the final period, scoring four more times. David Fischer swiped at a loose puck in the slot that found its way to the stick of David Rutherford at the top of the crease. Rutherford stuffed the puck through the five-hole to extend the lead by two.
Nearly two minutes later, Florida made it 5-3 as Cedric McNicoll one-timed a cross-ice pass from Marquardt past Fallon.
There were two more goals in the third, both tipped shots in front by Brandon MacLean and Leigh Salters to cap off a consecutive seven-goal span that iced the victory.
Muse earns the win stopping 27 of 29 shots while Fallon takes the loss allowing seven goals on 28 shots faced. Marquardt, Rutherford and McNicoll each finished with three-point nights.
Game 4 is slated for Tuesday and the first 2,500 fans to walk through the gates at Germain Arena receive an Everblades rally towel. Game 5 is Wednesday. All games start at 7:30 p.m.
Kelly Cup Finals Schedule
(Series tied 1-1)
Game 1 Florida 1, Las Vegas 2
Game 2 Florida 7, Las Vegas 2
Game 3 Friday, May 18, Las Vegas at Florida, 7:30 p.m.
Game 4 Tuesday, May 22, Las Vegas at Florida, 7:30 p.m.
Game 5 Wednesday, May 23, Las Vegas at Florida, 7:30 p.m.
Game 6 Friday, May 25, Florida at Las Vegas, 10:05 p.m. (if necessary)
Game 7 Saturday, May 26, Florida at Las Vegas, 10:05 p.m. (if necessary)