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SWAMP RABBITS COMPLETE COMEBACK AGAINST EVERBLADES

Saturday, January 27th
SWAMP RABBITS COMPLETE COMEBACK AGAINST EVERBLADES

ESTERO, Fla. – Brannon McManus tied the game with 2.3 seconds left and provided the only goal in the shootout round, powering the Greenville Swamp Rabbits to a come-from-behind win against the Florida Everblades, 4-3, on Friday night. The win puts the Swamp Rabbits back in a deadlock with the Adirondack Thunder for the top spot in the ECHL with 59 points in the standings.

Jake Smith, formerly an Everblade from last season, hit paydirt to start off the scoring entries towards the end of the first. With 3:44 remaining, Nick Prkusic barreled through net-front traffic and found Joe Leahy close off the blue line. Leahy fired a pass across to Smith, who rifled a shot past Everblades goalie Cam Johnson to put the Swamp Rabbits up 1-0 (Leahy and Prkusic assisted).

Florida controversially tied the game 44 second into the second period, scoring despite an offside sequence that wasn’t called on the ice. Oliver Chau fired a shot through traffic that deflected off of Logan Lambdin and past Swamp Rabbits net-minder Ryan Bednard, squaring the game at 1-1 (Chau and Riese Zmolek assisted). Exactly 1:22 later, newly named Everblades Captain Joe Pendenza sprinted up the left side of the attacking zone in transition and uncorked a wrist shot past Bednard’s glove that pushed Florida ahead 2-1 at 2:06 of the second (Zach Tsekos and Oliver Chau assisted).

Midway through the third, Greenville got some life in their comeback when Anthony Beauchamp drew a penalty shot at 8:58. Beauchamp buried his shot past Johnson and squared the game at 2-2 with the first penalty shot goal of the year for the Swamp Rabbits. However, Pendenza struck back 36 seconds later, sneaking behind the defense and finishing on a fake past Bednard to vault the Everblades to a 3-2 lead (Lambdin and Chau assisted). Down, but not out, the Swamp Rabbits earned a power play in the final three minutes and eventually pulled Bednard for the extra-attacker. With 2.3 seconds left, the Everblades won a defensive zone draw, but lost control of the puck to Carter Souch behind the net. Souch looked east-west and found Brannon McManus, who lasered a wrist shot down the middle past Johnson, tying the game at 3-3 (Souch had the lone assist).

Both teams remained deadlocked after seven minutes of 3-on-3 hockey, prompting a shootout for just the second time in both team’s seasons. In the top of the third round, Brannon McManus potted the lone goal of the shootout, and followed by Bednard’s denial of Bobo Carpenter, lifted the Swamp Rabbits to a 4-3 comeback win.

Ryan Bednard won his fourth straight start and seventh of his last eight, stopping 34 of 37 shots faced and all three shooters in the shootout (14-8-0-0).

The Swamp Rabbits rematch the Everblades tomorrow night, closing out their head-to-head season series. The finale is set for 7:00 p.m. puck drop at Hertz Arena.

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About the Greenville Swamp Rabbits …
Acquired by Spire Sports + Entertainment (SS+E) in 2020, the Greenville Swamp Rabbits hockey team have been providing family friendly, live entertainment at Bon Secours Wellness Arena since 2010. Formerly the Greenville Road Warriors, the Swamp Rabbits are the highest-level professional minor league franchise in South Carolina. The Swamp Rabbits are the proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL's LA Kings and the AHL's Ontario Reign. Greenville is a member of the ECHL, Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League.

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