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Royals Comeback Push Falls Short in Toledo, 4-3

Saturday, April 16th
Royals Comeback Push Falls Short in Toledo, 4-3

Click Here for Box Score

Teams     Per: 1          2          3

REA:              0          0          3 =3

TOL:              4          0          0 =4


REA: 1-1-0

TOL: 1-1-0


REA: Ouellette (N/D) (3/6) (11:41)

            Morrison (Loss) 0-1-0 (14/15) (46:21)

TOL: Paterson (Win) 1-0-0 (23/26) (59:56)

Power Play:

REA: 0-5

TOL: 1-3

Toledo, OH – The Reading Royals (­­­­­­­­­loss, 1-1-0) of the ECHL, affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League, were defeated by the Toledo Walleye (1-1-0), affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings of the NHL, 4-3, in Game Two of the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Quarterfinal playoff matchup at Huntington Center in Toledo, Ohio. The win for the Walleye tied the series at one game apiece.

In sharp contrast to last night’s Game One, the Walleye came storming out of the gate and bagged four goals in just about every way imaginable—power play, short-handed, five-on-five, and four-on-four—in a span of 8:14 in the first period to build what proved to be an insurmountable lead despite a three-goal surge by the Royals in the final frame. Toledo scored three goals on their first six shots to chase goaltender Martin Ouellette; but only generated a total of twenty-one shots in the game. Reading, after going two for five with the man advantage in Game One, were blanked in their five chances on the power play tonight.

Toledo capitalized on their first power play chance 6:48 into the first with a beautiful tic-tac-toe left-right-left passing sequence between the Spink twins, which ended when Tylor Spink faked a shot and slid the puck to top of the crease, where Kyle Bonis found a soft seam between two Reading defenders for an easy tap in after goaltender Martin Ouellette sprawled towards the right side of the net.

2:34 after that, on the Royals’ first power play chance of the night, a miscue in the offensive zone resulted in a short-handed break for Toledo’s A.J. Jenks, who gained possession in the neutral zone and charged into the Royals’ end on the right wing side. A relatively soft back-check by Reading allowed Jenks to carry all the way to the net and cut hard right to left at the top of the crease for a short-handed reach-around stuff behind Ouellette.

2:19 after that, Toledo capitalized on another breakaway that resulted after another turnover in the offensive zone. Scott Czarnowczan took control and went coast-to-coast. Ouellette came out to make the original save, but the rebound fell to Shane Berschbach who in turn got a point blank look. Ouellette made the save on that one, as well, but the second rebound fell to Evan Rankin who didn’t miss on a wide open back-hand with the Royals’ back-checkers buzzing by him.

The third goal chased Ouellette in favor of goaltender Adam Morrison; but it didn’t stop of the Walleye, who got what proved to be the game winner 15:02 into the first while the two teams were playing four aside. Berschbach took a shot from the high slot that hit his teammate, Jenks, in the back-side and ricocheted into the right circle. Jenks tracked the loose puck down and threw it towards the net where defenseman Joel Chouinard, who had the inside track on Kevin Young, got two swipes at the puck, ultimately backhanding the puck through Morrison for his first of the playoff season.

After being pretty much held at bay for the first two periods, the Royals struck early in the third to kick-start the come-back effort. Mike Marcou fired a seeing-eye slapper from the high slot that bounced through heavy traffic, but was rejected by goaltender Jake Paterson. The rebound landed in a spot where Justin Crandall stepped in a swiped the puck under and through Paterson for his first professional playoff goal forty-one seconds into the third.

9:30 into the third, Marcou took another long range shot slap shot—this one spinning end-over-end that arced over the left shoulder of Paterson for his first of the playoff season to make it 4-2.

With time winding down, Reading drew within the one with a pulled-goaltender sixth-attacker goal. Cam Reid slipped a pass to Brandon Alderson, who was deep on the left side. Alderson powered his way out of the corner to the top of the crease and stuffed the puck around Paterson to make it 4-3 with 2:13 remaining in regulation.

For the final 150 seconds, the Royals pushed hard and created several scoring chances as Toledo took (and missed) several long-range bids at the empty net. But Reading was unable to bag the equalizer and now head home for Games Three and Four at Santander Arena in Reading.


Game Three Eastern Conference Quarterfinal Best-of-Seven Playoff Series

Reading Royals v Toledo Walleye

@ Santander Arena – Reading, PA

Tuesday, April 19, 2016 (7:00 pm Eastern Time)

NEXT UP: The Royals and Walleye travel to Santander Arena in Reading, Pennsylvania, for Game Three in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals matchup on Tuesday (April 19, 2016 @ 7:00 pm). The first round playoff showdown can be heard live on CBS SportsRadio 1240 AM and 98.5 FM in Reading, Pennsylvania, starting with the pre-game warm-up show presented by Highmark Blue Shield at 6:30 pm Eastern Time. 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.

Eastern Conference Quarterfinal Best-of-Seven Series

Friday, April 15 (7:35 pm) – Huntington Center (Toledo, OH) (Royals 4-Walleye 3) (Reading Leads Series 1-0)

Saturday, April 16 (7:35 pm) – Huntington Center (Toledo, OH) (Walleye 4-Royals 3) (Series Tied 1-1)

Tuesday, April 19 (7:00 pm) – Santander Arena (Reading, PA)

Wednesday, April 20            (7:00 pm) – Santander Arena (Reading, PA)

Friday, April 22 (7:35 pm) – Huntington Center (Toledo, OH) – if necessary

Sunday, April 24 (4:00 pm) – Santander Arena (Reading, PA) – if necessary

Tuesday, April 26 (7:35 pm) – Huntington Center (Toledo, OH) – if necessary

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