Written by Jake WheelerESTERO, FL- The Jacksonville Icemen defeated the Florida Everblades 3-2 in a shootout on Wednesday night at Hertz Arena. Icemen goaltender Francois Brassard picked up the win making 30 saves and stopped four of five shots while Vladislav Mikhalchuk scored the game-winning goal in the fifth round of the shootout.
The Icemen got off to a great start in the game as just over a minute into the game forward Brendan Harris received a pass from forward Derek Lodermeier in the slot and one-timed the puck past the Everblades goaltender to take an early 1-0 lead.
Jacksonville would commit the game’s first penalty; however, Florida was unable to convert on the man advantage. Moments later following the penalty kill, forward Jake Elmer was hard on the forecheck and freed the puck to make it loose and defenseman Zach Berzolla buried it to make it a 2-0 lead.
Later in the first period, Jacksonville was called for another penalty and Florida was able to capitalize to make it a 2-1 game on a tally from Joe Pendenza. After 20 minutes of play, the Icemen led the game 2-1.
The Icemen had an early powerplay in the second frame, although, they were not able to generate much again on the man advantage, going 0-for-6 on the night.
The third period started off with an early Everblades goal from Nathan Perkovich to tie the game 2-2. The game needed extra time to settle this one as in overtime we saw fast-paced, back and forth play. Florida started overtime with a 5-on-3 power play for 1:47. Jacksonville’s penalty kill killed off both penalties with a gutsy effort.
Neither team was able to convert in overtime, and the game headed for a shootout. The Icemen got goals from James Sanchez and Vladislav Mikhalchuk in the shootout, while Francois Brassard stopped four of five shoots to pick up the 3-2 win. With the win, the Icemen maintain first place in the South Division.
The Icemen play in Orlando at the Amway Center on Thursday, February 17th at 7pm.