Royals travel to Norfolk for back-to-back
Norfolk, VA – The Reading Royals (20-16-3-5, 46 pts., T-4th North), proud ECHL affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, have won eight straight games against the Norfolk Admirals (18-22-3-3, 42 pts., 5th South) as the clubs start a back-to-back Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. The Royals have won five straight at the Norfolk Scope Arena.The games in Norfolk Wednesday and Friday are the second and third of the season series. Reading shut out the Admirals, 3-0, Jan. 4. The Royals return home for Pink in the Rink Saturday at 7:00 p.m. vs. Brampton at Santander Arena.Reading is coming off its most-lopsided win of the season, a 6-1 victory Sunday vs. Manchester. Five Royals notched multi-point games and six players scored. Callum Booth made 33 saves (1 GA), the most wins he’s had in a Reading victory this season. The Royals went 2-2-0-0 last week to maintain a tie for the fourth and final playoff spot in the North Division.The Admirals were mauled by Jacksonville, 8-5, on Saturday in a contest that featured 105 combined PIM. The loss snapped a season-long four-game point streak.Next Home GamesSat., Feb. 9: Pink in the Rink vs. Brampton at 7:00 p.m.1) 2nd of 3 games honoring the American Cancer Society2) Royals will wear specialty pink jerseys3) Ladies Night4) Enter for a chance to win a 2017 Toyota Camry, courtesy of AutoRide of ReadingMon., Feb. 11: Player Cards and Player Autograph session vs. Brampton at 7:00 p.m.1) Postgame player autograph session and player card giveaway, pres. by Rieck's PrintingWed., Feb. 20: Player Cards and Player Autograph session vs. Maine at 7:00 p.m.1) Postgame player autograph session and player card giveaway, pres. by Rieck's PrintingDiChiara and Schmidt stake their claimWith leading goal scorer Josh MacDonald on a professional tryout agreement in Lehigh Valley, Adam Schmidt and Frank DiChiara are the active Royals goal leaders (13). Each scored their 13th in the 6-1 Sunday win over Manchester.Schmidt, 28, is in his fifth professional campaign and a native of Warrington, PA. Last campaign, he accumulated 17 goals (44 pts.) and was the team’s second leading returning scorer behind Chris McCarthy. Schmidt (30 pts.) is on pace for 50 points this campaign and is one of three Royals to hit the 30-point mark.DiChiara (13g, 26 pts.) is in his second season and has already surpassed the nine goals and 23 points he registered as a rookie last season with Worcester. He is best on the club with six power-play markers and has a team-high nine man-up points. At this point last season with the Railers, DiChiara had five goals, including two game-winners against Reading. His 13 goals this season are the most he scored since his time in junior hockey.3 or fewer a lotSince Dec. 28, the goaltender of record for the Royals has allowed three or fewer goals in all but two games (16 GP). Andrew D’Agostini is 5-1-1-0 (2.30 GAA, .929 sv.%) while Callum Booth has lowered his season’s goals against average (2.68) and increased his save percentage (.906) en route to an 8-6-0-1 record.Fawcett and Cockerill debutThe Royals acquired Tyson Fawcett and Garret Cockerill last week from Jacksonville and each played their first couple of games with Reading last weekend in the split with Manchester. Fawcett scored his first Royals goal Sunday, giving him strikes in two of the last three games.A fifth-year professional from Barrie, ON, Fawcett scored three goals and four points in 29 games with Jacksonville this season. As a rookie with Brampton in 2014-15, Fawcett made the ECHL All-Star game and generated nine goals and 24 points. The next season with Evansville, Fawcett scored a career-best 22 goals and 42 points. He was Elmira’s alternate captain in 2016-17. The Royals are his eighth professional team. Riley back on it Forward Jack Riley scored one goal and two points Sunday vs. Manchester, his fourth multi-point game of the season and his first since Dec. 14 vs. Allen. The goal was the 26-year-old rookie’s first since Dec. 28 vs. Newfoundland.Last season, Riley scored his first professional goal with the Royals at Norfolk Apr. 6. He followed up that two-point effort with another multi-point game (1g, 1a) the next night to complete the regular season, giving him four points in his first two games vs. Norfolk. The West Point, NY native has accumulated six goals and 18 points in 39 games this campaign.Rookie Roos continues consistent pace Alex Roos generated his second multi-assist game of the season (2a) and has two goals and four points over his last five games. In 27 games, the native of Prairie Grove, IL has nine goals and 17 points. Sixteen of those points have come in the last 22 games.Roos has not endured a point drought longer than three games since scoring his first career point in November.A former Michigan graduate transfer, Roos pounded six points (3g) in 13 games with the Wolverines last season.About the RoyalsThe Royals are in their 18th ECHL season and 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.Listen to all Royals broadcasts at Mixlr.com/ReadingRoyals or by downloading the Mixlr App from the App Store or Google Play.