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Royals Sign Forward Kirk MacDonald

Monday, October 1st
Royals Sign Forward Kirk MacDonald

Most Valuable Player from 2008-09 Royals Returns to Reading

Reading, PA – The Reading Royals of the ECHL, affiliate of the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League and the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League, today announced that the organization has agreed to terms with forward Kirk MacDonald. In separate transactions also announced today, the Royals: (i) released goaltender Kevin Beech from his ECHL Tryout Agreement; (ii) signed goaltender Ross MacKinnon to an ECHL Tryout Agreement; and (iii) signed defenseman Mike Lane to an ECHL Tryout Agreement. Last season, MacDonald, a sixth year pro from Victoria, British Columbia, scored ten goals, assisted on twenty-three others (thirty-three points) and picked up eighty-two penalty minutes in seventy-three games with the Providence Bruins of the AHL. That marked the third consecutive full season with the P-Bruins for MacDonald, who was signed to an NHL contract by the Boston Bruins in February of 2011. This marks the second stint for MacDonald with the Royals. He scored a team-high twenty-one goals and added eighteen assists (thirty-nine points) in forty-four games for the Royals in 2008-09. MacDonald, who was selected as Reading’s Most Valuable Player that season, played his final game with the Royals in late February of 2009 when he was loaned to the P-Bruins where he stayed for the remainder of the season. MacDonald had at least one point in nine of his last ten games with Reading, racking up eleven goals and six assists (seventeen points) in that time frame. In his fourth to last game with the team, on February 14, 2009, MacDonald bagged a natural hattrick at First Arena in Elmira, New York, scoring the game’s first three goals (including the game winner) in a 4-1 win over the Elmira Jackals. MacDonald, who has played a total of 353 pro games—266 in the AHL—has been a part of a number of big moments in his pro career, including the epic 2008 AHL East Division Semi-Final match-up between the Albany River Rats and the Philadelphia Phantoms. In Game Six of that series, MacDonald scored his first pro playoff goal, which couldn’t have come at a bigger moment, staking the River Rats to a 1-0 win at the 10:38 mark of overtime and sending that series to a deciding Game Seven, which was ultimately won by the Phantoms. Prior to turning pro, MacDonald had a stellar four season and five year career at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. After leading R.P.I. in goals (16) and points (36)—and being selected the team’s MVP—in his junior season (2004-05), MacDonald was diagnosed with testicular cancer, which kept him out of action the following year. However, in 2006-07, MacDonald not only returned for his senior season, but he once again led the team in goals (12) and tied for the team lead in points (27). For his efforts, MacDonald, who served as the team captain that season, was voted as R.P.I.’s Most Inspirational Player. That year, MacDonald was also recognized by the Rensselaer Alumni Association with their Community Service Award and was a finalist for the Hockey Humanitarian Award, which is awarded to college hockey’s finest citizen. McKinnon (6’0/193) (25), who hails from Manchester, Connecticut, played four seasons for Neumann University. Last season, in his senior year, he compiled a record of 9-4-3 with a 2.95 goals against average and a .909 save percentage. In his freshman season, 2008-09, MacKinnon was named to the ECAC-West and USCHO.com East All Rookie Teams. He was also selected as the Division III Frozen Four Tournament’s Most Valuable Player as he led the Knights to the D-III National Championship. Lane, (6’2/202) (27), who hails from West Chester, Pennsylvania, played four games last season with the Knoxville Ice Bears (0g-1a=1pt; 4 pims) of the Southern Professional Hockey League. Lane played collegiately at Utica College. The Royals Pre-Season Training Camp on-ice practice sessions are open to the public and kick off tonight: Monday, October 1, 2012, at 7:00 pm the Sovereign Center in Reading, Pennsylvania. The Royals open the 2012-13 regular season in Elmira, New York, on Friday, October 12, 2012, when the team will take on the Elmira Jackals at 7:05 pm. The next night, Saturday, October 13, 2012, the Royals open the home season when the Titans visit the Sovereign Center at 7:05 pm. Season Tickets for the 2012-13 Reading Royals are currently available. Call 610-898-7825 or visit www.royalshockey.com for more information.