Reading, PA – Alex Krushelnyski scored a breakaway goal halfway through the third period to tie the game at two, but Wheeling Nailers netminder John Muse blocked all four Reading Royals opportunities in the shootout to savor a 3-2 win for the Nailers Saturday at Santander Arena.
Nick Luukko failed to tally on the backhand in the bottom of the shootout’s fourth round. Next, Cam Brown beat Angus Redmond (loss, 31 saves) on a forehand finish at the left doorstep.
Muse made 37 saves against his former team and won his Wheeling debut.
Steve Johnson scored his first professional goal to give Reading a 1-0 edge two minutes into the second. The Nailers scored the next two goals before Krushelnyski’s tying strike.
On Sun., Oct. 28, the Royals are set for a rematch with Wheeling at 4:00 p.m. Check out concourse trick-or-treating and a free postgame skate, pres. by Body Zone.
Box ScoreIn a scoreless first period, Redmond blocked ten shots and Muse saved 13.
Johnson broke the scoreless contest at 1:45 of the second. Michael Huntebrinker side stepped a Wheeling defender at the right circle and tossed it net front. Muse made the initial save, but Johnson activated from the left point to jam in the puck. Frank DiChiara received the secondary assist.
Six minutes later, Winston Day Chief tied the game, 1-1, at the left doorstep. Standing at the left post, he received a back-door pass from Cam Brown and nicked it past Redmond. Troy Josephs also earned a secondary assist.
Josephs tallied the go-ahead goal for the Nailers at 2:34 of the third on the power play, sniping a shot from the right circle to the back bar. Day Chief and Brown assisted. Wheeling finished 1-for-2 on the man up.
Reading had one shot in the third period and started to rack momentum before Krushelnyski’s tying goal. After intercepting a batted puck at the Nailers line, he gained speed, cut to the attacking line, shifted to his forehand, headfaked and scored top shelf on the back hand with 10:45 left in the third.
The Royals failed to score on five power-play chances, including a two-minute chance in overtime.
Following Sunday’s rematch, Reading is on the road at Maine Fri., Nov. 2 at 7:30 p.m. On Sat., Nov. 3, Reading visits Manchester and the puck drops at 6:00 p.m.
Halloween Night vs. Wheeling: Oct. 28, 4:00 p.m.Specialty Halloween jerseys | concourse trick-or-treat | postgame skate (pres. by Body Zone).
About the RoyalsThe Royals have been owned by serial entrepreneur Jack Gulati since 2014 and are entering their 18th ECHL season. Proudly affiliated with the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers and AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms, Reading plays in the Santander Arena, located in downtown Reading, PA at 700 Penn Street. The Royals won the Kelly Cup in 2013, have made the playoffs in nine straight seasons and are four-time division champions.
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