The Jacksonville Icemen’s three-game home winning streak ended Friday night as the Eastern Conference-leading Florida Everblades won, 5-2. Jimmy Lodge and Dajon Mingo each scored tonight in the Icemen’s loss.
It didn’t take long for the physical play between these two teams to start tonight. Just six seconds into the first, Icemen captain Garet Hunt and Kyle Neuber dropped the gloves for a lengthy bout at center ice. Throughout the first, both teams would go back and forth, looking for the first goal. Florida nearly had it after the halfway mark in the frame, but Austin Lotz made a spectacular sprawling save to rob the ‘Blades forward. However, Florida did find the back of the net with under three minutes remaining as Logan Roe went coast-to-coast, put the puck between his legs and then beat Lotz on his left side. With 14 seconds to play, a poor turnover for Jacksonville in the neutral zone led to another incredible goal for Florida as Matt Berry sent a backhand shot top shelf past Lotz for the 2-0 lead.
Florida increased their lead to three goals when Mitchell Heard connected on a slapper from the point on a five-on-three power play. The Icemen eventually found a spark later on in the period when Dajon Mingo fired a slapshot of his own past Callum Booth. Jimmy Lodge struck just 55 seconds later with an absolute laser of a wrist shot that found the top shelf of the net. With the arena full of excitement, the ‘Blades found a way to grab another two-goal lead as Stephen MacAulay followed up on the rebound. The Icemen entered the third period trailing 4-2.
Jacksonville wouldn’t be able to extend the home-winning streak to a record four games as John McCarron scored on the empty net late in the third period to seal the victory for Florida. Elgin Pearce’s franchise-tying four-game goal streak would end as he was held off the scoresheet.
The Icemen finish off the homestand tomorrow night at 7:30 p.m. against the ‘Blades. Click here to get your tickets!