DULUTH, Ga. -- Russ Sinkewich scored the game-winner in overtime, as the Gwinnett Gladiators knocked off the Florida Everblades 4-3 Saturday night at the Arena at Gwinnett Center.
Sinkewich's marker came at the 2:09 mark of the extra period as he beat Everblades (15-12-3-4) goalie Rob Madore over the shoulder with a wrist shot from the far circle. This marks the Westlake, OH native's third game-winning goal of the season, all coming with Gwinnett following his acquisition from the Alaska Aces on December 13th.
Gwinnett goalie Louis Domingue made 26 saves to improve to 11-3, while Madore stopped 35 shots in a losing effort. Gwinnett (24-12-1-0) remains in first place in the South Division with the win.
Alex Belzile scored the first goal of the game for the Gladiators 3:57 into the first period. The tally came as Belzile created a turnover in the defensive zone, and beat Madore one-on-one with a nifty deke.
Florida got on the board thanks to Leigh Salters 11:03 into the first period on the power play to even the score 1-1 through one period.
Alex Hutchings put the Everblades on top of Gwinnett with a goal 2:08 into the second period on the power play, but the Gladiators would answer with two goals of their own.
Andy Brandt tied the score with a marker 12:15 into the second. A rebound off Madore found its way to Brandt in the slot, and the Gladiators Captain buried it with Doug Jones and Belzile picking up the assists.
Marietta, GA native Jones put the Gladiators back on top 15:15 into the second, chipping a shot over a sprawled Madore to put Gwinnett ahead 3-2. Casey Pierro-Zabotel picked up an assist on the play along with Scott Arnold.
The Everblades managed to draw even at the 8:43 mark in the third with Brayden Irwin scoring his sixth goal of the season, forcing overtime and setting the stage for Sinkewich's heroics.
The Gladiators return home to the Arena at Gwinnett Center next Saturday, January 12th to face the Kalamazoo Wings for the first time this season.