Pink in the Rink Night Saturday at Santander Arena
Reading, PA – The Reading Royals (21-17-3-5, 50 pts., T-4th North), proud ECHL affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, begin a pivotal back-to-back with the Brampton Beast (23-20-3-1, 50 pts., T-4th North) on Pink in the Rink Night Saturday at Santander Arena. The Royals will donate $5 to Breast Cancer Support Services of Berks County or the American Cancer Society for every ticket sold to Saturday’s home game. Call 610-898-7825 for more information.The Royals trailed the Beast in points to begin the week, but have tied Brampton by winning two of three games this week. Brampton split a mid-week set in Newfoundland against the Growlers, taking a 2-1 win Wednesday on a second-period, game-winning goal from leading scorer Brandon Marino (40 pts.).The top-four teams in each division qualify for the Kelly Cup Playoffs and Saturday’s winner seizes sole possession of fourth. Reading trails Manchester by two points for third.Reading registered a season-high 47 shots Friday at Norfolk, but the Royals lost, 5-2, after the Admirals scored two empty-net goals. Nick Luukko scored twice for his first career multi-goal effort. The fourth-year Royals blue liner has played 248 games with Reading, third-most in team history.Monday at 7:00 p.m., it’s a player card giveaway and a postgame player autograph session, pres. by Rieck’s Printing, at Santander Arena as the Royals rematch the Beast. Group tickets start at $11 for all Royals home games.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 PrintingHead to headThe Royals and Beast have met once this season; Reading suffered a 3-1 loss at Santander Arena Jan. 18. The Royals look to take the season-series lead with a couple of home wins Saturday and Monday.Chris McCarthy has the lone goal for the Royals against Brampton this season. Josh MacDonald, who is currently with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, notched the only assist on McCarthy’s goal.Branden Komm was in net for the Royals in the only matchup, making 33 saves.Andrew D’Agostini is 5-2-1-0 this season with a 2.40 goals against average and a .921 save percentage.Brampton’s Étienne Marcoux allowed one goal in the teams’ last matchup, making 29 saves.David Vallorani scored twice against the Royals in the Jan. 18 matchup and leads the team with two points in the series. Six Beast players registered one point against Reading.The teams combined for three man-up chances in the first meeting, but both failed to score. Brampton was 0-for-1 on the man up. Frank DiChiara continues to lead the Royals in power-play goals with six. David Pacan is best on Brampton with seven.Scouting BramptonBrampton enters the weekend coming off of a 2-1 win against the Newfoundland Growlers on Wed., Feb. 6. The Beast are 7-3-0-0 in their last ten games.Brandon Marino has a team-high 31 assists and has chipped in nine goals to lead the squad in points. David Pacan tops Brampton with 19 goals, followed by Nathan Todd (18) and David Vallorani (14).Jake Paterson was in net for Brampton on Feb. 6, making 29 saves in the 2-1 win (1 GA). He is 7-10-1-0 on the season with a 3.12 goals against average and a .905 save percentage. Étienne Marcoux holds a 10-7-1-1 record with a 2.97 goals against average and a .910 save percentage.10 left After the game against Brampton on Monday, the Royals will have ten home games left at Santander Arena. The Royals are 10-10-2-2 at home this season. Since Dec. 14, Reading has gone 8-4-0-1 at Santander Arena and outscored foes, 41-28.Reading has made the playoffs twice in team history (2011-12, 2015-16) when registering fewer than 20 victories at Santander Arena.By contrast, the Royals are 11-7-1-3 on road (26 points), putting the squad on pace for 44 points in away games. The Royals have made the playoffs all seven times they’ve had at least 43 away points.Put ‘em with ChrisChris McCarthy has helped increase the production of his line mates multiple times this season and is now centering a line with Adam Schmidt and Frank DiChiara. Over the last three games, that line has been on ice for at least one Royals goal. McCarthy has six assists in the last three games and 18 points (3g) in his last ten contests.The team’s leading assists (40) and points (51) leader McCarthy first turned on the jets in late November and early December. Playing between Josh MacDonald (team-high 18g) and Alex Roos (9g), McCarthy’s line created a combined 44 points in December. McCarthy became the first Royals player in eight seasons to have 21 points in a month.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.