Atlanta goalie Matt Ginn made 37 saves while the Gladiators got a shootout winning goal from Derek Nesbitt to avenge the loss the night prior to Florida. Atlanta spoiled Pink in the Rink night and halted a four-game losing streak Saturday evening against the conference-leading Everblades in Estero, FL.
For the second consecutive night, the visiting Gladiators notched the opening goal to take a 1-0 lead in the first period. Shane Bakker made his way into the Florida zone and delivered a pass to the right point to the trailing Nick Trecapelli. The Guelph, ON native wasted no time and took a quick wrist shot that was redirected in the low slot by Justin Buzzeo and sailed over the left shoulder of the Florida goalie, Daniel Altshuller, and into the net. The tally gave the Windsor, ON native goals in four straight games and his 17th marker of the season.
Florida would counter with the lone goal of the middle stanza to tie the game at one just 1:03 into the period. The Everblades sped up ice on a 4-on-1 rush led by Zack Kamrass where the Atlanta, GA native dropped the puck to Matt Berry after the home side entered the Gladiators' zone. The second year pro then skated into the right wing circle and ripped a snap shot over the shoulder of Matt Ginn, Atlanta's starting goalie, to tie the contest. The 17th notch of the season for Berry was also assisted by John McCarron.
Berry was back at it again to give the Everblades their first lead of the game at the 7:04 mark of the third period. A tic-tac-toe passing play from Matt Hatch and Clark Bishop opened up the Canton, MI native in the low slot. Berry then moved in on a partial breakaway and wired the puck past Ginn's pad for the score.
The Gladiators would get an equalizer just over two minute later to tie the game at 2-2. Rory Rawly received a rink-wide pass from Mark Naclerio and blasted the one-timer into the net from the left circle. The second goal of the season for the former Everblade was his first tally as a Gladiator since being traded from Florida on January 17th and was also assisted by Tyler Shiplo.
After a scoreless rest of the third period Atlanta entered overtime shorthanded with Florida having the chance to win the game with a 1:59 of a 4-on-3 power play. Ginn stepped up and made a bevy of saves to kill of the penalty and eventually both teams were unable to score in the five minute extra session sending the game to a shootout.
Derek Nesbitt was the second shooter for Atlanta after neither team was unable to score in round one of the shootout. The Captain scored five-hole and gave the Gladiators a 1-0 lead in the shootout. Ginn would make all three saves and give the extra point and win to Atlanta.
With the two points in the win, Atlanta improved to 18-23-6-2 and 43 points on the season. Florida collected one point with the shootout loss and remained on top of the South Division with 69 points.