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Royals Explode for Four in the Third to Pull Off Epic Comeback, 4-3

Saturday, November 22nd
Royals Explode for Four in the Third to Pull Off Epic Comeback, 4-3

Teams     Per: 1          2          3

IND:               0          3          0= 3 

REA:              0          0          4= 4


IND: 3-7-2-1=9 (7th North Division)

REA:  7-5-1-0=15 (5th East Division)


IND:  Reichard (loss) 3-4-1-0 (32/36)

REA: Knapp (win) 4-2-0-0 (23/26)

Power Play:

IND: 0-3

REA: 2-6

Reading, PA – The Reading Royals (­­­­­­­­­win, 7-5-1-0=15) of the ECHL, affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League and the Lehigh Valley Phantoms of the American Hockey League, defeated the Indy Fuel (win, 3-7-2-1=9), 4-3, at Santander Arena in Reading, PA.

In the first match-up in the respective histories of the two teams, Reading spotted Indy a three goal lead entering the third period before exploding for four in the final frame to stretch the team’s unbeaten streak to five (4-0-1-0). The first forty minutes were not very pretty for the big crowd (6209) at Santander Arena on Veterans Appreciation night, as the only time Reading was able to sneak one across the goal line, the referee waived it off for incidental contact with goaltender Cody Reichard. In contrast, the Fuel hit for the trifecta in the second period to take what appeared to be a relatively safe advantage to the third period against a relatively moribund Reading group. But the report of the Royals’ collective death proved to be greatly exaggerated. The team rang off four straight, including back-to-back power play goals and what proved to be game winner with just 2:42 left in regulation by the team’s all-time leader in goals scored, Olivier Labelle.

First Period (0-0, Tie)


In a period where the two new opponents played it safe and sound, the only puck to cross the goal line in the first period was for naught, as the referee ruled that incidental contact from the Royals’ David Marshall prevented Indy goaltender Cody Reichard from making a save on a Cam Reid shot mid-way into the frame—much to the chagrin of the large crowd at Santander Arena.

Second Period (3-0, Indy)

8:51 (1-0, Indy) Indy Goal

Gotovets (2); Czarnik (snap shot from top of the right circle)

Indy struck first when Kirill Gotovets settled and ripped a snap shot from the top of the right circle that buzzed over the left shoulder of Reading goaltender Connor Knapp for his second of the year.

14:26 (2-0, Indy) Indy Goal

Holl (1); Czarnik and Brisbois (snap shot from the mid-slot)

The Fuel stretched their lead to two on another snapper from the right side of the mid- to high- slot. This one came off the stick of Justin Holl, who bagged his first goal as a pro by stepping off the left point diagonal down to the right side of slot and then firing a bullet back against the grain that grazed off the left pipe and ended up in the net.

18:16 (3-0, Indy) Indy Goal

Gotovets 2 (3); Czarnik (cut across the crease and stuff off the rush)

Indy added insult to injury after the conclusion of a late period power play push for Reading during which the Royals repeatedly buzzed the Fuel cage with one time blasts and puck battles off rebounds from in tight. However, Gotovets, who was in the penalty box for a hooking minor, stepped out of the box and caught a stranded and tired PP unit on the ice. Gotovets retrieved the puck in the neutral zone and took off streaking down the right wing side into Reading’s end. He cut hard to the middle of the ice below the dot in the right circle and flew across the top of the crease beating everyone, including goaltender Knapp, to the left side of the crease where he stuffed it home for his second of the game.

Third Period (4-3, Reading)

4:29  (1-3, Indy) Reading Goal

Lamarche (1); Cruthers (snap shot from just inside the blue line in the middle of the high slot)

Reading began to turn the tide relatively early in the third when Ryan Cruthers won a face-off in the left circle back to defenseman Maxim Lamarche who was in the middle of the ice just inside the blue line. Lamarche took a high snap shot that beat goaltender Reichard to the glove side for his first as a Royal.

8:20 (2-3, Indy) Reading Goal (Power Play)

Mullane (6); Davies and Lamarche (snap shot from mid-slot)

With just one second remaining in the fifth power play chance of the game for the Royals cut the Indy lead to one. After working the puck around the horn on the perimeter several times, Pat Mullane settled in the right circle and cut to the middle of the slot where he drilled a hot bullet low to the stick side for his sixth of the season.

13:43 (3-3, Tie) Reading Goal (Power Play)

Comrie (3); Davies and Mullane (one-time blast from top of right circle)

Reading tied the game with just five seconds remaining in the Royals’ sixth power play opportunity. Defenseman Zach Davies set one on a tee at the top of the right circle for Adam Comrie, who uncorked a one-time bomb that blew by Reichard low stick for Comrie’s third of the year.

17:18 (4-3, Reading) Reading Goal

Labelle (4); Marcou and Hughesman (rebound punch back from top of the right side of the crease)

Reading took the team’s first lead of the game with just 2:42 remaining in regulation when Mike Marcou took a hard slap shot from the right point that Olivier Labelle deflected on the way to the net. Reichard had difficulty handling the low puck due to its sudden change in directions, and the rebound slid back to the top of the right crease, where Labelle, who was involved in an epic net-front battle, punched it back home for what proved to be his first game winner of the year.


  • The scratches for the Royals tonight were: Dan Ford (d) (healthy), Jordan Heywood (d) (healthy), Kevin Walrod (f) (healthy), and Brock Higgs (f) (healthy) (placed on ECHL Reserve List).
  • Andrew Johnston, who was assigned to Reading from Lehigh Valley yesterday, played his first game for the Royals tonight (0g-0a=0pts, even; 2 shots on goal).
  • Matt Hatch was activated from the ECHL Reserve List today and played his fifth game of the year for Reading.
  • Maxim Lamarche scored his first goal and recorded his first multi-point game of the year (1g-1a) in tonight’s contest.
  • Pat Mullane’s goal—his second in two games—was his sixth of the season, tying Cam Reid for the team lead in that category.
  • All three of Adam Comrie’s goals this season have been scored while the Royals were playing with the man advantage. He leads the team in PPGs.
  • Zach Davies recorded a pair of assists in tonight’s game. That was his second multi-point game of the season.
  • Olivier Labelle’s goal was his seventy-fifth career goal with the Royals. He is the team all-time career leader in that category. Labelle was playing in his 169th game as Royal (fourth most in team history).
  • Adam Hughesman recorded an assist on Labelle’s game winner. Hughesman leads the Royals with seventeen points (5g-12a). He has picked up at least one point in eleven of the Royals thirteen games this season.
  • Cam Reid has his league season-long point streak snapped at eleven games tonight (6g-8a=14pts).


Reading Royals v Indy Fuel

@ Santander Arena – Reading, PA

Sunday, November 23, 2014 (5:05 pm)

NEXT UP: The Royals and Fuel go at it again tomorrow afternoon (5:05 pm). It’s a Super Saver Sunday with free parking at RPA parking garages, as well as a Berks Packing Dollar Day ($1.00 hot dogs, popcorn, nachos and soda). The first 1000 kids 14 years of age and younger will also get a Royals’ T-Shirt courtesy of Highmark Blue Shield. Please note that Sunday’s game day broadcast can be heard live on CBS SportsRadio 1240 am and 98.5 in Reading, Pennsylvania, starting with the pre-game warm-up show presented by Highmark Blue Shield at 4:35 pm. Streaming audio is available free of charge on the Royals’ website (follow the ‘headset’ icon); and streaming video is available on a pay-per-view basis through ECHL.TV.

For more information about the Royals, call 610-898-7825 or log onto www.royalshockey.com.

End 14 11-22