Everblades Dice Trenton Up, 8-2
One night after being mathematically eliminated from the ECHL Kelly Cup Playoffs, the Trenton Titans hosted the Florida Everblades with nothing on the line but their pride.
The continuing story of the season wrote another chapter just 55 seconds into the game as Brandon MacLean tapped a puck into an open net after an Everblades forward who was tangled with Titans defenseman Gentry Zollars knocked Titans Goalie Brad Phillips out of position.
Cedric Lalonde-McNicoli beat Phillips at the 15:10 mark of the period after the makeshift defense missed picking him up off after failed clearing attempt.
With just under three minutes left in the period, the score increased to three as a Trevor Bruess pass bounced of Zollars’s skate and into the net.
Down 3-0 at the end of one, the Titans found a way to look even less energized in the second.
A visibly angry Coach Vince Williams played the realist.
“We’re not a very good team right now,” he said. “It’s a combination of things, it just where we’re at. We are what we are.”
MacLean and Lalonde-McNicoli each scored their second goals of the night during the first half of the period to make it 5-0.
The Titans spent the overwhelming majority of the last 10 minutes of the second period on the powerplay, but failed to pull themselves back into the game despite the extended advantage.
Finally, after almost 10 straight minutes on the powerplay, Steve Silva snuck a wrist shot past Joe Palmer of Florida to make it 5-1 ending the period.
Coach Williams noted the pounding his team took in one simple sentence.
“We got abused,” He said. “Some guys are getting a taste of pro hockey. We got one veteran defenseman (DiLauro) playing 40-50 minutes a night. It’s not lack of effort, it’s not quitting, its fact.”
Starting the third, Ryan Hayes quickly scored a power play goal to bring the score to 5-2.
At 16:54, Florida squashed any hopes of a comeback as Irwin beat Phillips over the glove side to make it 6-2.
David Rutherford scored an identical goal to Irwin’s with 5:02 to play to make it 7-2.
Florida tacked on another goal late for the final result
Coach Williams, even with his team mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, stated the roster moves will continue with an eye towards competing next season.
“We’re going to right the ship,” he said. “Two weeks, three weeks left in the season."