Against the Odds Eels Came Out on Top: 28 Player College Advancements and a National Championship Advancement

The Florida Eels have had an extraordinary regular season. Despite various adversities and injuries early in the season, the Eels continued to show up and prove time and time again they were not to be taken lightly: they in fact were the team to beat. As an Eel it is the very fiber of our being, whether you are a coach or a player, to face these obstacles with integrity, to want to face the absolute toughest opponents and to never back down or shy away from the best competition.  It is from these experiences that our players build fortitude and resolve to go the distance. The Florida Eels have advanced to playoffs for over 15 straight seasons, 7 seasons since joining the USPHL, and the Eels were determined to participate once again.

After facing a tough regular season line up both in the Florida Division and in Showcase play both Eels teams advanced to the USPHL Florida Divisional Playoffs, Eels Premier taking the second-place entry slot and Eels Elite taking the second-place entry slot. The Eels Premier were to match up against the third-place entry Tampa Bay Juniors and the Eels Elite against third- place entry the Atlanta Mad Hatters.

In true Eels fashion the Eels Elite battled hard, showing determination, strength and passion, as they took Atlanta Mad Hatters through a three game series. The Eels never gave up and battled to the last minute of play, as they bowed to the Mad Hatters who took the play off victory. Although disappointed that the season was now at its end, and the team would not be advancing to nationals, there was no disappointment in the teams’ overall success and accomplishments this season. For it is not about the wins and losses on the ice, it is about player development, and player character that are the true mark of accomplishment. With that the Eels Elite team are true champions: as they advance an unprecedented 10 PLAYERS to college hockey this season. This is a remarkable achievement, unheard of by other Elite and Premier teams, and one that the Eels community is truly proud of.

Additionally, Under Coach Frankie Scarpaci’s leadership and advisement, an additional 18 Premier PLAYERS, along with the 10 PLAYERS from Elite, will advance to the College Hockey level. Coaches from NCAA Division II and Division III, ACHA Division I and Division II take notice of these well trained, and conditioned athletes developed by Scarpaci. The player and character development speaks for itself. As a total of 18 players from the Eels organization move forward in their hockey careers to the college level. It is a clear demonstration of why the Eels continue to be a premovement junior program across the USA, Canada and Europe.

The Florida Eels Premier, under the leadership of Coach Frankie Scarpaci, claimed the victory of the three game playoff series against the Tampa Bay Juniors. Premier entered each game with grit, strength, passion and fortitude. The battles were fierce but the Eels Premier were ready and had a fire in their blood. They would not lose; they would not quit. After two games, the Eels lit the lamp claiming game three and the playoffs with a  5-0 win over the Tampa Bay Juniors. The Eels Premier will head to Nationals, for their 7th straight USPHL National appearance, 13 appearances over all.

Eels Premier head to Utica, New York for the USPHL Nationals on Tuesday, March 19th, 2024. Although, the Eels have been preparing for this moment since they hit the ice in August 2023, they will have an additional practice March 20th, 2024 in Utica before they hit the ice for game play March 21st. The Eels will look forward to playing the USPHL’s best in this fierce competition as they work to bring home the championship and cup to Fort Myers, Florida. Eels Premier will take on the Potomac Patriots and the MJDP for their first two games of the seeding round March 21st and March 22nd, where they will then be reseeded for further play (future opponents to be announced). We know they will represent the Eels Organization and Community well, and wish all players, coaches and staff a safe journey and abundance of success at this years’ National Championship.

The Florida Eels want to take a moment to thank all of our parents and players who trusted us over their tenure with us. Having you as a part of our program and Eels family has been a tremendously rewarding gift. We are forever grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of your lives, your development and your successes. The Eels organization doesn’t just look for talented athletes but high character individuals to be a part of our program. Watching our players take part in the community, with the local youth is something we are very proud of. Gentleman, we are very proud of you! To the Eels billet families who graciously took players into your homes and families we thank you! You are a big part of our Eels family, and we truly express our gratitude for providing our players the safe space and family comforts of your home. To our fans who have supported us over the past two decades, thank you! The Florida Eels fans are remarkable and stem across the whole world, local and global. We are truly so lucky to have such a supportive fan base and support network for our players.

The Eels administration wants to congratulate all our players on their regular season! Good Luck Eels Premier…bring it home boys!



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