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Ousted by the Icemen: the Gladiators fall by a 4-1 margin to Jacksonville

Preview: Jacksonville Icemen (19-14-3/41 points/4th place) vs Atlanta Gladiators (13-21-1/27 points/14th place)

Coming off the ECHL All-Star Break, the visiting Jacksonville Icemen and Atlanta Gladiators looks to get some positive momentum going.

The Icemen are playing at a .500 clip (5-5-0) over their last 10 games. They are looking to Brendan Harris (11 goals/26 assists/37 points), Christopher Brown (13 goals/19 assists/32 points), and Craig Martin (8 goals/13 assists/21 points) to lead the offense. Michael Houser (7 wins/2.74 GAA/.903 save percentage) is between the pipes as the starting goaltender for tonight's game.

As for Atlanta, Gustavs Davis Grigals (6-9 record/3.54 GAA/.899 save percentage) looks to provide improved goaltending and set the tone for the team defense. On offense, returning leading scorers Cody Sylvester (10 goals/16 assists/26 points), Micah Miller (12 goals/11 assists/23 points), and Jackson Pierson (10 goals/12 assists/22 points) look to lead the charge on offense and get in the win column.

For our pregame interview, Charlotte, NC native and Atlanta Gladiators' forward Brendan Hoffmann (2 goals/8 assists/10 points) takes time to provide insights on his professional hockey journal. With a focus on team chemistry, keys to positioning the team for a win, and teachable moments for younger players, he provides an engaging conversation on the game of hockey and beyond (you may watch the full interview below):

Game highlights: The Icemen pull away in the 3rd period for a 4-1 win over the Gladiators

Jacksonville gets on the scoreboard early in the first period (1:54) thanks to Craig Martin's 9th goal of the game (assisted by Riley Fiddler-Schultz). They would build on their lead in the second period as Damien Giroux (2nd goal of the season) pushes the Icemen lead to 2-0 (assisted by Chris Grando and Logan Cockerill).

However, the Gladiators, thanks to some hard-hitting defense and gritty play, would get back in the game.

Literally less than 5 seconds into their power play (second period/6:55), Cody Sylvester (11th goal of the season) cuts into the lead, making it a one goal game (2-1) thanks to assists by Ryan Cranford and Luke Prokop.

Despite the Glads' effort to get back in the game, the 3rd period belongs to the Icemen. Garrett Van Wyhe's goal (7th goal of the season at the 17:36 mark of the period, with assists by Connor Russell and Jerry D'Amigo) gives Jacksonville a 3-1 lead and to seal the deal, Damien Giroux's 2nd goal of the game (his 3rd of the season along with the assist by Christopher Brown) at the 19:49 mark ends the game with a 4-1 loss for Atlanta.

Jacksonville's edge in shots (37-31) negates Atlanta's advantage on the power play (1 for 3 compared to 0 for 3 for Jacksonville). The Icemen travel to Greenville, SC for a game against the Swamp Rabbits (January 20, 2024), while the Gladiators look to bounce back (on January 20, 2024 at 7pm) at home (the Gas South District) against the South Carolina Stingrays for their Star Wars Night promotion.

Notes: All photos and video are recorded by CCSLLC (click HERE to subscribe and watch the season playlist).


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