CINCINNATI, Ohio – The Florida Everblades (12-8-1-4) killed off a late-game power play and held on to beat the Cincinnati Cyclones (14-8-2-0) by a 2-1 score in front of 3,547 at U.S. Bank Arena on Friday night. It was the second game in a row that Florida was able to sneak past Cincinnati by a one-goal margin.
Florida raced out to a 1-0 lead as Brayden Irwin buried a rebound past Brian Foster (L, 16 saves, 11-3-2) at the 5:01 mark of the opening stanza. Then, with under a minute to play in the frame, a bouncing puck came to Irwin in the Cincinnati slot and he was able to turn around a wrist shot to light the lamp for a second time – giving the Everblades a 2-0 edge through 20 minutes.
Cincinnati’s Josh Shalla came up with a goal early in the second period; after having his initial shot blocked, the rookie backhanded the puck through the legs of John Muse (W, 27 saves, 6-3-1-3) at the 4:04 mark to cut the Cyclones deficit to one. And despite throwing nine shots on net in the middle frame, Cincinnati remained down a goal through two periods.
The Cyclones had several chances to tie the game in the final frame, including a late power play after Irwin was whistled for boarding. Despite having a six-on-four advantage after pulling the goalie and outshooting the Everblades nine to three in the third, Cincinnati was unable to find the equalizing tally and Florida held on to win by a 2-1 final score.
First Star: Brayden Irwin (2 goals for Florida)
Second Star: John Muse (27 saves for Florida)
Third Star: Josh Shalla (1 goal for Cincinnati)
The Cyclones will return to the ice at U.S. Bank Arena on Friday, December 21 when they welcome in the South Carolina Stingryas at 7:30pm