Written by Jake Wheeler
JACKSONVILLE, FL – Jacksonville Icemen forward Brandon Gignac was able to pot two goals against the Greenville Swamp Rabbits, which helped Jacksonville prevail to a 3-1 victory on Thanos Night.
The first period got underway with offensive surges from both clubs. The Icemen committed the first two penalties of the contest which both resulted in two good defensive sequences for the Icemen. Following the special teams play, Icemen forward Erik Bradford snapped off a quick shot from the left-hand circle to give the Icemen the first lead of the game. The Icemen then received their first power play opportunity; however, the Swamp Rabbits were able to fend off the man advantage. At the end of 20 minutes the Icemen lead 1-0 and Greenville has the edge in shots on goal 11-10.
The second period was a very even one, where both clubs played fast-paced hockey. Both teams had good offensive possession. The Icemen had their second power play of the game but once again the Swamp Rabbits were able to kill off the man advantage, with the teams combining to go 0/4 so far in the game. This game has truly been a goaltending battle as Jacksonville goaltender Charles Williams and Greenville goaltender John Lethemon have been stellar for their teams. After 40 minutes of play the Icemen lead 1-0 and also lead in shots on goal 18-15.
The third frame started off like the first two. Both teams had their offensive opportunities but neither team could capitalize from the start. About 10 minutes into the period Icemen forward Brandon Gignac scored off a cross crease pass to give Jacksonville a two-goal lead. Moments later, Greenville scored to bring them back within one goal. Greenville had a power play chance late in the period, which eventually went to a 4 on 3 power play because a Jacksonville and Greenville player received matching minors. The Icemen were able to kill off the power play and Brandon Gignac was able to score an empty net goal to seal the deal for the Icemen. The Icemen won the game 3-1 and led in shots on goal 23-22.
The Icemen head to Greenville for matchups on Saturday and Sunday with the next home game on Friday April 9th.