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Royals Tame First Place Growlers in Series Opener, 5-2

Sunday, February 19th
Royals Tame First Place Growlers in Series Opener, 5-2

Reading, PA - The Reading Royals (28-16-3-0), proud affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, defeated the Newfoundland Growlers (34-13-1-0), 5-2, on Saturday, February 18 at Santander Arena. Multi-point games by Brendan Hoffmann (2 G, 1 A), Devon Paliani (2 G, 1 A) and Max Newton (1 G, 2 A) led the Royals to their 15th win at home this season (15-7-0). Nolan Maier earned his twelfth win of the season with 26 saves on 28 shots faced (12-7-3) while Dryden McKay suffered the loss in goal for Newfoundland with 25 saves on 30 shots faced (13-5-1). 


Brendan Hoffmann scored Reading’s eighth shorthanded goal of the season 8:57 into regulation for a one-goal lead after the first period, 1-0. Newton stole the puck from Jack Badini at center ice and connected with Hoffmann along the left wing for a breakaway rush into Newfoundland’s zone. Hoffmann beat McKay to score his second shorthanded goal of the season and tally the 12th game the Royals have scored the game’s opening goal in their last 13 contests. 

Reading held Newfoundland to one shot on goal through the opening 14:18 of the game and five shots in the first period. Each team notched goals in the second period for a one-goal advantage for the Royals at the end of two periods, 2-1. During a five-minute major penalty charged to Nathan Noel for boarding, Paliani and Newton connected with Hoffmann in the slot to fabricate the forward’s second goal of the game and ninth goal of the season. 

Newfoundland answered back with 1:44 remaining in the period to get on the board and cut Reading’s lead in half, 2-1. Isaac Johnson delivered a wrist shot from the right face-off circle that clipped the post and ricocheted into the back of Reading’s net for his 13th goal of the season. The power play goal extended Johnson’s point streak to four consecutive games (3 G, 2 A).

Reading surged out to a three-goal lead on Max Newton’s highlight-reel goal and back-to-back goals by Paliani. Newton scored his team leading 23rd goal of the season by putting his stick in between his legs and flicking a rebound off of McKay’s pad past the netminder and across the goal line. Paliani scored two goals in a span of 3:08 jolt the Royals ahead, 5-1.

Mason Millman earned the lone assist on Paliani’s first goal while Sam Hu and Hoffmann earned the helpers on Paliani’s second goal of the game and 10th goal of the season. The assist for Hoffmann and second goal for Paliani set single game professional career highs for both skaters. The multi-goal game was the first of Hoffmann’s professional career while Paliani earned his second as a pro, first as a Royal.

The Growlers scored with 4:03 remaining in the third period to cut their deficit to three goals. On Newfoundland’s fourth power play of the game, Brennan Kapcheck beat Maier low blocker side with a slapshot from the blue line for the defenseman’s third goal of the season. The second power play goal allowed was the sixth time this season Reading has allowed two power play goals in a single game.

The Growlers pulled McKay from their net and brought an extra attacker on to the ice in an attempt to comeback and even the score. The effort went to no avail as blocked shots by Newton and Colin Felix as well as three final saves from Maier solidified Reading’s first win over the Growlers this season.

Reading improved to a 1-2-1 season series record against the Growlers and 16-12-8 record all-time. The Royals are 21-8-3 when scoring first in games this season and improved to a 23-10-3 record against divisional opponents (.681%).

The Royals close out their two-game series with the Growlers on Monday, February 20 at 1:00 p.m. at Santander Arena. The home game features the President Day promotional game. Order tickets and see the full ~ promotional schedule ~ now!-Upcoming Games:

  • 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
  • Autism Acceptance Night & Slapshot's Birthday - Mar. 4 vs. Trois-Rivières
    • Slapshot Saturdays: $2 off craft draft beers 6-7:00 PM
    • Slapshot Saturdays: pre-game photo on ice with Slapshot from 6:00-6:15 below section 109
    • Slapshot's birthday party with visiting friends!
    • Sensory room
    • Scout Night

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.