Jackals Shell-Shocked in Six Goal First Period by the Royals
The Reading Royals (20-12-1-1) exploded for six goals in the first period and coasted to an 8-2 win over the Elmira Jackals (7-21-5-0) Friday night at First Arena.
The Royals zipped out to a quick lead in the opening period on a Matt Willows deflection at 3:16, which began a flood of Reading goals for the remainder of the first period. Olivier Labelle continued his dominance against the Jackals with his 14th goal of the season at 6:57 of the first. He would add his second of the night at 12:18 to make it 5-0 in the first period, giving him six goals in four games against the Jackals this season.
The Royals also got first-period goals by Matt Wilkins, Ryan Penny and Chris McCarthy to end the first period with a 6-0 lead over the Jackals.
Reading opened a 7-0 lead less than seven minutes into the middle frame, capitalizing just as a power play expired. After several crisp passes, Florian Iberer scored from the bottom of the right circle at 6:58 for his eighth goal of the season.
From there, the Jackals upped their physical play and pulled the momentum in their favor, finally getting on the board at 12:22. On their first power play of the night, the Jackals worked the puck around the point, with Greg Amlong setting up Sebastien Sylvestre at the point. Sylvestre kept the puck moving to the left circle to Sam Povorozniouk, who snapped a wrist shot from near the left faceoff dot for his first goal as a member of the Jackals and his 12th goal of the season.
Then, with just five seconds to go, Sylvestre and Povorozniouk were sprung on a 2-on-1 and Sylvestre wristed a shot from the left circle for his ninth goal of the year to make it 7-2. Steven Kaunisto and Andy Iles picked up the assists and the Jackals looked to claw back into the game.
Any momentum the Jackals picked up late in the second disappeared in the opening moments of the third period, as they gave up back-to-back odd-man rushes. The first 2-on-1 for the Royals was unsuccessful, but the very next rush led to a breakaway for Justin Crandall, who beat Iles on a backhand shot for an 8-2 Reading lead. The game would go scoreless the rest of the way as Reading went on to win by that score.
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Saturday, January 14th: Elmira Jackals vs. Reading Royals - 7:05 p.m.
Monday, January 16th: Elmira Jackals at Reading Royals - 1:00 p.m.
Friday, January 20th: Elmira Jackals at Manchester Monarchs - 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, January 21st: Elmira Jackals at Manchester Monarchs - 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, January 22nd: Elmira Jackals at Manchester Monarchs - 3:00 p.m.