GLENS FALLS, NY – The league-leading Florida Everblades rolled into Adirondack Thunder territory with a confidence that deteriorated into arrogance at times during the three-game series. That arrogance, coupled with the home team’s never-quit attitude, dropped the Everblades out of the top spot in the league over the weekend. The Thunder showed what a resilient team they are, coming back from deficits in each game, earning five of a possible six points against a top team, and doing so without two of their top three scorers.
With Ty Loney and Shane Conacher both recalled to the Syracuse Crunch of the AHL, the Thunder needed someone else to step up offensively, and several players did just that. Brian Ward scored in all three games, amassing an impressive seven points (four goals, three assists). Three other players accumulated five points (Terrence Wallin had three goals and two assists, while James Henry and Mathieu Brodeur each had a goal and four assists). Paul Rodrigues scored goals in each of the first two games. Dylan Olsen, Andrew Radjenovic, and Desmond Bergin picked up two assists apiece.
The Thunder stepped up away from the scoreboard as well, with four separate players receiving fighting majors. Most notable was Conor Riley, who challenged Florida’s Matt Mackenzie after a nasty hit that took Rodrigues out of the game Saturday night.
In each of the three games, the Thunder battled back from deficits. On Wednesday, Florida went into the second period with the lead; Adirondack scored three unanswered goals to seal the 4-2 victory. Friday’s game was arguably one of the most exciting of the season. With the home team trailing by two in the third period, the Thunder made a thrilling comeback, with Rodrigues tying it up with less than eight seconds remaining in regulation, and Henry winning it as the lone scorer in the shootout. Saturday’s overtime loss also featured a two-goal deficit for Adirondack. Florida scored three goals in the second period and headed into the third with a 3-1 lead, but the Thunder scored twice to tie the game and pick up the fifth of a possible six points.
The Adirondack Thunder next face divisional opponent Reading Royals Tuesday, January 30 at the Cool Insuring Arena. Adirondack had been winless in the first six games against Reading, but have won the last three and four of the last five against the Royals.