The Florida Eels Premier team came alive on Sunday with their 6-3 resounding win over the Tampa Bay Juniors. They inched so close to over taking 1st place. Now they are just 2 points out of first in the Florida Division. The Eels just came off their first regulation loss of the season against the Tampa Bay Juniors on Friday night. In Friday’s game, the Eels played to a 3-2 game before pulling its goalie in the final minute but were not able to convert a goal and the Juniors scored an empty netter to make it 4-2 final. Simply put on Friday the Eels Premier team did not have it. They did not perform up to their standard. They did not play their style. They had a strong first period but thawed their attack in the 2nd and 3rd stanza. From our coaches to our players there were no excuses. They knew it. You could see it in their faces the disappointment in their own game. They took accountability. On the way home back from Tampa you could hear the boys deliberate talk of what they needed to do collectively as a team and individually as players to ensure this won’t happen again and more specifically Sunday.
Sunday the Eels got to avenge their Friday night loss with their 6-3 win over the same Tampa squad. The first period the Eels were in somewhat neutral. Their game was still moderate. In fact, not only did Tampa draw first blood in the 1st period it did not take long for the Juniors to add to their lead in the beginning of the second, by scoring their 2nd of the afternoon. However, the Eels did not panic. They are known for having “ice water in their veins” The Eels were given the message by Coach Scarpaci in between the 1st and 2nd, and they responded with 3 solid goals. You could see the Eels were back in sync and they found their game. Their forecheck looked aggressive. They smothered the Juniors in the back end. The Goaltending by Alex Caron came alive. You could the game was about to be taken over by the Eels and in a big way.
In the 3rd period we saw the Eels light things up even more adding 3 more goals to their tally including a Hat Trick by Collin Patterson and the Juniors managed a dismal one to make the final 6-3. It was an impressive win for the Eels. No doubt as a general rule it is not easy to bounce back from a loss like Friday but this Eels team is not “Ordinary” They are built solid from the foundation up. They are solid through and through. They have skill, resilience, fortitude, determination, character, and they have all bought in. These boys are on a mission.
We are extremely proud of the Premier team in their efforts and performance Sunday. They learned form their loss Friday night. In fact it is often a quote GM Scarpaci echoes, “you learn twice as much from your losses than your wins.” Friday night’s loss was a teaching tool. Sunday’s performance goes well beyond the win. It is who we are and who they are. It is part of the Eels DNA.