Florida Everblades

Tokarski's Return, Janus' Rise Creates Competition in Norfolk

He's back.

Dustin Tokarski spent the first weekend of the Tampa Bay Lightning's 2011 training camp in a nice new Lightning cap and standard-issue Lightning shorts and t-shirt, standing at the glass watching his teammates make their impressions on Lightning management. An abdominal injury kept Tokarski out of the Coral Springs rookie tournament, and now the highly competitive start of training camp.

Things started looking up for the former Memorial Cup MVP Wednesday as the Tampa Tribune reported the two MRIs done on Tokarski revealed no damage. He was back on the ice Wednesday morning.

And just in time.

Rookie Camp Roster Announced

(Tampa Bay Lightning press release) The Tampa Bay Lightning will open their 2011 Rookie Camp with fitness testing and physicals at the Brandon Ice Sports Forum on Friday, September 9, the team announced today. The prospects will hit the ice in Brandon the following day, Saturday, September 10.

For the first time in franchise history the Lightning prospects will travel to the Saveology.com Iceplex in Coral Springs, Florida for a three-team rookie tournament which begins Sunday, September 11. The tournament will also feature prospects from the Florida Panthers and
Nashville Predators. The camp and tournament schedule is as follows:

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/9/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.6 Florida Everblades 3 @ No.3 Kalamazoo Wings 5
Kalamazoo wins best of five series 3-1

LW Alex Hutchings: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 4 GP, 1-2-3, -2, 6 PIM

Florida’s season came to an end Saturday with a 5-3 loss to Kalamazoo. The K-Wings won the series three games to one. The ‘Blades fought back from a 3-1 deficit to tie the game 3-3 midway through the third period, but Kalamazoo scored the game winner less than two minutes later then added an empty net goal. Hutchings’ first pro season comes to an end with a solid postseason showing where he finished second on the team in points. The former Barrie Colt will go into next year hoping to earn a spot on AHL Norfolk’s roster.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/8/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.6 Florida Everblades 3 @ No.3 Kalamazoo Wings 4
Kalamazoo leads best of five series 2-1

LW Alex Hutchings: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 3 GP, 0-2-2, -2, 6 PIM

Florida put up a good fight on the road, but a goal by former Vermont Catamount Brady Leisenring at the 8 minute mark of the third period put Kalamazoo up 4-3 for the game and eventually 2-1 in the series. Leisenring has played in three leagues (CHL, ECHL, AHL) this season. The ‘Blades will need a win Saturday in Michigan to stay alive. Lightning prospect Alex Hutchings notched his second point of the playoffs in the loss. Mike Zacharias stopped 30 shots in the loss and had an assist.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/6/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.3 Kalamazoo Wings 4 @ No.6 Florida Everblades 1
Best of five series tied 1-1

LW Alex Hutchings: 0-0-0, -2, 6 PIM (unsportsmanlike conduct, slashing, tripping), 2 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, -1, 6 PIM

The K-Wings scored three times in the first period en route to a 4-1 Game 2 win over the Florida Everblades. Florida now travels to Michigan for the next three games of the series and has to win two of them to keep their season alive. Alex Hutchings did not register a point Wednesday, but spent some time in the box feeling shame. Goaltender Bobby Goepfert was pulled in the second period down 4-0. Game 3 is Friday.

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