Reading, PA - The Reading Royals (26-14-2-0), proud affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, fell to the Worcester Railers (23-20-3-0), 4-3, on Tuesday, February 7 at Santander Arena. The Royals have dropped four of the last five meetings with the Railers with all five games coming down to a one-goal differential. Pat Nagle suffered the loss with 19 saves on 23 shots faced (9-4-0). Henrik Tikkanen earned his first career win over Reading in net for Worcester with 49 saves on 52 shots faced (12-12-2).
Reading scored the game’s opening goal for an eighth-straight contest to take an early lead over the Railers 4:40 into regulation. Brendan Hoffmann corralled a loose puck behind Worcester’s net and beat Tikkanen to the left post on a wrap-around. Devon Paliani and Tyler Kirkup earned the helpers on Hoffmann’s seventh goal of the season and fourth point in the rookie forward’s last five games.
The Railers evened the score on a power play goal by Brent Beaudoin less than three minutes later before taking a one-goal lead of their own 3:48 into the second period. Jimmy Lambert earned his first of three points (1 G, 2 A) in the game with a shorthanded goal on Reading’s fourth of six power play chances. Lambert cut across Nagle’s crease after racing down the left wing and flicked his own rebound over the goaltender’s left pad for his 10th goal of the season. The shorthanded goal was the fifth allowed by Reading this season.
Worcester improved to a three-goal advantage with two goals scored in a span of 1:49 split on opposite ends of the second intermission. Billy Jerry snapped a wrist shot over Nagle’s glove in the final 36 seconds of the second period for his third goal of the season. Worcester connected on three crisp passes in Reading’s zone to set up Andrei Bakanov on the right wing to blast a one-timer past Nagle 47 seconds into the period. Lambert and Beaudoin each earned assists on Bakanov’s first goal of his ECHL career for their third points of the game.
The Royals brought the game within one goal in the third period on back-to-back power play goals scored by Dominic Cormier. Jacob Gaucher earned the secondary helpers on both goals for the rookie forward’s ninth multi-point game of the season. Mason Millman earned the primary assist on Cormier’s first goal snapped past Tikkanen’s glove while Alec Butcher earned the assist on Cormier’s second tally which beat Tikkanen between his right pad and blocker. Cormier earned his second multi-goal game of his professional career with his sixth and seventh goals of the season.
Reading fell short of evening the score to complete the comeback in the final 4:41 of regulation. Tikannen turned aside the final three shots he faced from Reading’s offense which produced a season-high 52 shots on goal. The shot total is the second game the Royals have produced 50+ shots over their last three contests and ties Atlanta and Tulsa for the third most shots on goal in a single game by a team this season. Atlanta is the lone team to earn a victory among the three in this regard.
The Royals dropped their third consecutive game to the Railers for the first time since January, 2020 and hold a 3-2-1 season series lead over Worcester (31-15-6 all-time). The Royals are now 2-11 when trailing after two periods and hold a 21-8-2 record against divisional opponents (.710%).
The Royals open a four-game road-trip in Norfolk, Virginia on Wednesday, February 8 at 7:05 p.m. at Norfolk Scope Arena. Their road-trip continues in Worcester on Friday, February 10 and Saturday, February 11 against the Railers at 7:05 p.m. both nights at the DCU Center. The road-trip concludes in Norfolk on Wednesday, February 15 against the Admirals at 7:05 p.m. at Norfolk Scope Arena.
The Royals return on Saturday, February 18 for a 4:00 p.m. two-game series opener against the Newfoundland Growlers at Santander Arena. The home game features the Ant-Man + The Wasp promotional game. Order tickets and see the full ~ promotional schedule ~ now!-Upcoming Games:
- Ant-Man + The Wasp Night - Feb. 18 vs. Newfoundland
- Join the Royals as they team up with Marvel's Ant-Man
- Ice Angels poster giveaway
- Specialty jerseys, available in online auction
- Ant-Man character appearance
- Slapshot Saturdays: $2 off craft draft beers from 3-4:00 PM
- Slapshot Saturdays: pre-game photo on ice with Slapshot from 3:00-3:15 below section 109
- Presidents Day - Feb. 20 vs. Newfoundland
- Specialty 1:00 p.m. afternoon game
- FREE admission for kids ages 14 and under
- Career Ready Berks Night - Mar. 3 vs. Trois-Rivières
- Career Ready Berks Night Job Fair presented by Mitsubishi Chemical Group
- $2 off domestic drafts 6-7:00 PM
- 4 for $60 deal including 4 tickets, 4 hot dogs, 4 drinks, and 4 pairs of thundersticks. Presented by Deibler Dental
2022-23 & 2023-24 Season Memberships
Reading Royals season tickets, flex memberships and group tickets are available for the 2022-23 & now 2023-24 season by visiting the Royals’ box office at Santander Arena or by calling 610-898-7825.
About the Royals
The Reading Royals, proud affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, are in their 21st season in the ECHL. They won their first Kelly Cup championship in 2013 and have clinched playoff berths in 11 of the previous 12 seasons. They are five-time division champions and were the 2021-22 Eastern Conference champion. The Berks County Convention Center Authority (BCCCA), founded in 1996, owns the Royals and oversees operations at Santander Arena.