- Coors Light Countdown to New Year’s – take advantage of BOGO tickets for tonight and Friday’s game by visiting orlandosolarbearshockey.com/coors as we prepare to ring in 2018!
TONIGHT: The Solar Bears (11-14-4-1) return to action following the holiday break as they battle the Jacksonville Icemen (7-15-2-2) for the first time on home ice since Nov. 21. The Solar Bears came away with a 4-1 victory over the Icemen in that game to kick off a 10-game stretch in which the team went 7-2-1-0. Orlando and Jacksonville have identical 2-1-1-0 head-to-head records against each other this season.
NOVAK WITH ANOTHER MULTI-POINT OUTING: With a pair of assists in Saturday’s match against Norfolk, Max Novak logged his seventh multi-point game of the season, tying him with Joshua Winquist for the team lead. Both Novak and Winquist – along with defenseman Nolan Valleau – also own the distinction of recording the only four-point games of the season for Orlando.
ICEMEN MISSING KEY INGREDIENT: One of Orlando’s largest challenges when playing Jacksonville this season has been shutting down feisty forward Emerson Clark – the fifth-year pro had been leading the Icemen against the Solar Bears with six points (4g-4a) in four games; his 113 penalty minutes are also second in the entire league. Fortunately for the Solar Bears, Clark signed a professional try-out with the AHL’s San Jose Barracuda on Dec. 8, leaving Jacksonville without one of its top playmakers over the last several games.
GOALIES AT A GLANCE: In three appearances against Jacksonville, Cal Heeter has posted a .914 save percentage for the Solar Bears; his season-long save percentage moved above .900 following a 35-save outing on Saturday. While Jacksonville’s Colton Phinney has earned two wins against Orlando this season, Icemen head coach Jason Christie may opt to ride the hot hand in newcomer Austin Lotz, who has won three of Jacksonville’s last five games.
- Joe Perry – needs 1 goal to tie Brett Findlay for second place in franchise history
- Sean Zimmerman – needs 2 penalty minutes for 1,000 career penalty minutes
AFFILIATE NOTES: The Toronto Marlies (22-9-0-0) visit the Syracuse Crunch tonight; Toronto has won three of four previous meetings with Syracuse this season. The Toronto Maple Leafs (22-14-1-0) topped the New York Rangers on Saturday with a 3-2 win and return to action tomorrow as they travel to Arizona to battle the Coyotes.
NEXT GAME: The Solar Bears battle the Florida Everblades in a Wawa Sunshine Cup Series match on Friday, Dec. 29 at 7 p.m. at the ARS.com Rink at Amway Center. Single-game tickets for the 2017-18 season are now on sale at the Amway Center box office and ticketmaster.com.
About the Orlando Solar Bears:The Orlando Solar Bears are in their sixth season of operation in the ECHL, the premier “AA” hockey league in North America, and are the proud affiliate of the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs and the AHL’s Toronto Marlies. The Solar Bears are owned and operated by the Orlando Magic and the DeVos Family, and play at the ARS.com Rink at Amway Center, the 2012 Street and Smith’s Sports Business Journal Sports Facility of the Year.
Festive Four Packs, presented by CenturyLink, are now available for purchase! Pick four games and get gift certificates to Sonny’s BBQ, Dick’s Sporting Goods, QDOBA Mexican Eats and a FREE center ice ticket to the Orlando Solar Bears Teddy Bear Toss game on Saturday, December 23! Packs start as low as $64 and include $68 in FREE gifts! Click here or call (407) 951-8200 for more information.
Officially licensed Orlando Solar Bears replica team jerseys, apparel, and headwear can be purchased online at orlandosolarbearshockey.com/shop.