The Florida Everblades are atop the ECHL standings after two weekends with a 5-0-0 record for 10 points after winning three games in three days over the weekend in California.
Florida opened the weekend with a 5-4 shootout win at Ontario on Friday. Rookie Kyle Bonis notched his first professional hat trick in the victory while fellow rookie John Henrion picked up his first professional points with three assists and added the clinching tally in the shootout. Jesse Deckert picked up the win in goal, making 27 saves.
On Saturday, the Everblades scored the first six goals of the game en route to a 6-2 win at Bakersfield. Danick Gauthier (2g-1a) and Matthew Pistilli (1g-2a) led the way offensively for Florida with three points each while Jordan Henry and Mike Little each had two assists. Deckert stopped 26 of the 28 shots he faced to once again pick up the win.
The Everblades ended their weekend back in Ontario on Sunday and skated away with a 5-4 overtime win. Pistilli and Rocco Carzo each scored two goals in the win, with Pistilli notching the game-winning goal just 32 seconds into the extra session. A.J. Jenks chipped in with a goal and two assists with Brandon MacLean adding a pair of helpers. Deckert recorded his third straight win, turning aside 23 Reign shots.
Several Everblades are among the league leaders early in the season with Pistilli ranking second in the league with nine points (5g-4a) while he and Bonis are tied for second with five goals. Bonis’ five goals are tops among first-year players in the ECHL, and his six points are tied for second among rookies. Carzo also ranks among rookie leaders as his three goals are tied for fourth, and his three points have him tied for eighth. Deckert’s first three wins this season over the weekend, moved him into a tie for the league lead.
Florida wraps up its west-coast swing on Tuesday at Las Vegas, before heading back to the Sunshine State for a home-and-home series with Orlando. The Everblades host the Solar Bears on Friday before visiting Orlando on Saturday.
With three games on the docket this week, the Everblades have a chance to match the ECHL record for longest winning streak at the start of a season. Both the Dayton Bombers in 1994-95 and the Trenton Titans in 2001-02 started their respective seasons 8-0-0.