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Royals Win Feisty Finale in Florida, 2-1

Saturday, December 12th
Royals Win Feisty Finale in Florida, 2-1

Click Here for Box Score

Teams     Per: 1          2          3

REA:              2          0          0=2

FLA:               0          1          0=1


REA: 11-10-1-2 = 25 (4th East Division)

FLA: 18-9-0-0 = 36 (1st South Division)


REA: Knapp (win) 6-5-0-1 (29/30)

FLA: Altshuller (loss) 10-3-0-0 (28/30)

Power Play:

REA: 0-3

FLA: 0-4

Estero, FL – The Reading Royals (­­­­­­­­­win, 11-10-1-2=25) of the ECHL, affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League, defeated the Florida Everblades (loss, 18-9-0-0=36), affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes of the NHL, 2-1, at Germain Arena in Estero, Florida.

In the third game in four days—and the final matchup of the regular season—between the Royals and Everblades, Reading bagged a couple of early goals and then held off the highest scoring the team with a combination of grit and guile—not to mention guts—and more than a few spectacular saves from goaltender Connor Knapp. The win, which snapped a three-game winless streak for the Royals (0-1-1-1), completed the southern swing of a season-long seven game road trip during which Reading pulled out four of the available six points in southwest Florida (1-0-1-1).

Reading struck 1:46 into the game when an aggressive fore-check from Pavel Padakin, Cam Reid and Yannick Tifu forced a turnover which led to a point blank look for Padakin from low in the left shot. Florida goaltender, Daniel Altshuller, made the original stop, but the rebound fell to the right side of the crease, where Tifu corralled and fired into an essentially empty net for his fifth of the season—and seventieth career goal as a Royal in his 201st game with the team.

The Royals got what proved to be the game winner moments later in the first period when Robbie Czarnik sprang Mike Pereira on a break through the neutral zone. Pereira outraced everyone to the Florida net solving Altshuller with a snap shot that bounded off his left shoulder into the net. For Pereira, that was his team-leading twelfth goal of the year 7:12 into the first.

Reading continued to take the play directly to the Everblades and appeared to be in command late into the second period, when a failed clear from the defensive zone back-fired into a one-time slap shot for the Everblades’ captain Matt Marquardt, who scored his fourth goal in three games against the Royals, causing the stuffed animals on Florida’s “Teddy Bear Toss” night to rain from the rafters at Germain Arena with 1:55 remaining in the second frame.

After a long delay to collect the stuffed animals, play resumed with a renewed vigor for both teams. Fueled by a four-minute power play the Everblades attacked for the remaining moments of the second period and all the way through the third with an aggressive posture, pushing the pace at every opportunity. But Reading pushed back at each turn and held the Everblades at bay with a flat refusal to give in or give up all the way to final buzzer.

The Royals complete the team’s season-long seven game road trip on Wednesday (December 16 @ 7:15 pm) when Reading makes the first trip in team history to The Scope in Norfolk, Virginia, to face the Norfolk Admirals. Wednesday’s game night 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 6:45 pm Eastern Time. As with all Royals’ road games, Friday’s game will be televised live in Berks County, Pennsylvania on BCTV courtesy of Boscov’s Travel and Apple Vacations. 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.

Season Tickets for the 2015-16 Reading Royals ECHL season are currently available. For more information about the Royals, call 610-898-7825 or log onto www.royalshockey.com.

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