ECHL BLOG, SIX PACKS ON ICE: Rivalry Heats Up Solar Bears vs. Everblades
It’s a great time to be in Florida with the sunshine and a hot ECHL rivalry that came to a head this past weekend.
The rivalry between the Florida Everblades and Orlando Solar Bears is a new one, but it’s already becoming fierce with Orlando’s first season in the league.
The Florida Everblades defeated the Orlando Solar Bears two out of three times in a stretch of games from Feb. 7-9.
The Everblades defeated the Solar Bears 3-1 on Thursday, Feb. 7. It was tied 1-1 at the end of the first period, but Florida found the net twice in the second period to take a 3-1 advantage. Third period was scoreless and so the first game went to the Everblades.
Friday’s game started with Florida up 1-0 at the end of the first period. The Everblades added two goals in the second, while the Solar Bears scored two of their own to take the score to 3-2 in favor of the Everblades going into the final period. The Solar Bears tied the game in the third period that forced the two teams into overtime. Orlando out-shot Florida 5-2 in OT, but neither team found the back of the net so a shootout was required to determine the winner. The four Florida players in the shootout were denied by Orlando’s goalie, Patrick Killeen, while Orlando players Chris Lawrence and Dan Dries scored to give the Solar Bears the two points and tie the series 1-1 heading into Saturday’s final game.
The game on Saturday, Feb. 9, was all about the first period. The Everblades scored six times in the first and allowed no goals from their opponent. The Solar Bears attempted to battle back in the second period and scored three goals, but Florida sealed the game in the third by adding another goal to take the final to 7-3. Matt Spiller, who was signed to the Everblades on Saturday, netted two goals.
During this series of games, Florida’s Mathieu Roy, Matthew Pistilli, Matt Spiller and Leigh Salters record two goals apiece.
Florida is ranked third in the South Division, while Orlando is in fifth place. The Everblades have an overall record of 24-16-4-5, and the Solar Bears are 22-24-2-3.
Despite this past weekend, Orlando has the edge so far this season and is 6-4-1 against Florida.
The rivalry isn’t over just yet; the two teams close their season with a four-game stretch against each other. So we salute you Florida and Orlando for keeping us entertained and can’t wait to see how this fresh rivalry will all play out in March!
(Photo Credit: Orlando Solar Bears/Facebook.com)