The Newfoundland Growlers couldn’t complete the comeback on home ice as the Florida Everblades earned their first victory of the Eastern Conference Finals by a score of 5-4 in front of over 4800 fans at Mile One Centre.
The Growlers scored first, from the stick of Scoot Pooley just 2:32 seconds in the first period but that only served to spark the Everblades who countered with three straight goals before the end of the final frame. Brady Ferguson got the Growlers on the board early in the second as he jumped on a Florida turnover and just tucked the puck behind Callum Booth. Just over 5 minutes later, Florida responded with a goal from Blake Winiecki. The Growlers kept the pressure applied and were rewarded when Scott Pooley made the wraparound play work to end the second period down just one goal, 4-3
The Growlers started the third period on the power play and Giorgio Estephan made no mistake, finishing off a saucer pass from Marcus Power to tie the game at four.
The game-winner came off the stick of Blake Winiecki, his second goal of the game, who was in the right spot to bury a rebound off the low pad of Michael Garteig.
The Newfoundland Growlers continue their quest to the Kelly Cup Friday Night at Mile One Centre against the reigning Eastern Conference Champion, the Florida Everblades. Puck drop is 7:00 p.m. Tickets are on sale now at the Mile One Centre Box office and online at mileonecentre.com