Boise, ID - The Reading Royals (12-14-1-1), proud ECHL affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers and Lehigh Valley Phantoms, defeated the Idaho Steelheads (22-8-0-1), 7-3, on Wednesday January 3rd at Idaho Central Arena. Parker Gahagen (4-2-0-0) earned the win in net with 38 saves on 41 shots for the Royals. David Tendeck (1-4-0-0) started in goal for Idaho and had 14 saves on 19 shots faced. At 45:59, Bryan Thompson stepped in goal in relief of Tendeck. Thompson had 7 saves on 9 shots faced.
Nicolas Ouellet opened the Royals seven-goal night with his first professional career goal 13:02 into the first period. Ouelett snapped a centering pass from Devon Paliani under Tendeck in the crease. Paliani and Shane Sellar earned assists for the first of three points for them both in the game.
31 seconds into the second period, Kenny Johnson snapped a wrist shot past Tendeck from the slot to put Reading up, 2-0. Paliani and Sellar earned the assists on Johnson’s first goal as a Royal. Idaho responded 2:10 into the middle frame when Willie Knierim beat Gahagen on a shot from the blue line. Jack Becker and Demetrios Koumontzis earned the helpers.
The Royals restored their two-goal lead at 4:35 into the second period with the lone power play goal of the game. Tyson Fawcett beat Tendeck on a backhanded goal assisted by Ouellet. The goal was Fawcett’s second of the season and Ouellet’s second point of the game for the rookie forward’s first multi-point game of his professional career.
In the final frame, the Royals exploded with three goals all within 62 seconds. At 5:41, rookie defenseman Trevor Thurston scored his first professional career goal on a shot from the blue line off of a face-off draw win by Joe Nardi and pass by Matt Brown.On the ensuing face-off, Adam Brubacher snapped a top-shelf goal on Tendeck for his sixth goal of the season. Sellar finished off the scoring barrage with a deflection on a wrist shot from Paliani and squeaked past Tendeck. The sixth goal prompted a goaltender switch for Idaho and brought Thomson into the Steelheads’ net.
Idaho’s forward Jack Becker scored a pair of goals within 2:14 of each other to cut the deficit in half, 6-3, with 8:26 remaining in regulation. Any hopes of a comeback for the Steelheads was put to rest on Austin Master second professional career goal with 1:42 remaining in the final frame. Brown and Johnson earned the assists for multi-point games on Master’s goal.
The Royals continue their three-game series against the Steelheads at Idaho Central Arena Friday, January 5th at 9:10 pm EST, and Saturday, January 6th at 9:10 pm EST.
The Royals return on Friday January 12th for a 7:00 pm game against the Maine Mariners at Santander Arena. The home game will feature the Royals Clothe the Community Night presented by CommunityAide. To order tickets, visit royalshockey.com/tickets
2023-24 Season Memberships
Reading Royals Season Memberships, six-game plans, ten-game plans, and group tickets are available for the 2023-24 season now 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 22nd season in the ECHL. They won their first Kelly Cup championship in 2013 and have clinched playoff berths in 12 of the previous 13 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.