Late goals lift Jackals past Royals in Game 3Friday, April 06, 2012
Elmira, N.Y. - The Elmira Jackals earned their first victory of the postseason on Friday night at First Arena, scoring three goals late in Game 3 of the best-of-five Eastern Conference Quarterfinals to beat the Reading Royals, 5-2. The Jackals now trail the series, two games to one, and will host the Royals in Game 4 on Saturday night at 7:05 p.m.
Click here for the box score.
Click here for Pat Bingham's comments.
For the third-straight game to start the series, Reading took a 1-0 lead, as Ian O'Connor's wrist shot from the right circle deflected past Brian Stewart at 9:10.
Mike Radja took a tip pass from Dustin Gazley in the high slot, stickhandled in toward Mark Owuya, and then snapped a puck off the netminder's glove and in, as Elmira tied the game, 1-1, at 16:54.
Zach McKelvie's wrist shot from the blue line redirected off of a falling Olivier Labelle and in with 3.7 seconds to go in the period, giving Reading a 2-1 advantage after one.
The Jackals tied the game early in the second period, as Craig Rivet took a feed from Artem Demkov and lifted a puck past Owuya from the right circle, making it 2-2 at 3:36.
With the clock winding down in the third period, Nick Dineen recovered after getting hit in the leg by a Mario Larocque shot moments earlier, found the puck in the right circle, and fired it past Owuya and in to give the Jackals their first lead of the series, 3-2, at 16:17.
Radja blasted in a centering feed in the slot from Gazley one minute later, extending the Jackals' lead to 4-2 at 17:17.
Rob Bellamy rolled in an empty-netter at 19:00 of the final frame, capping the scoring at 5-2.
Stewart (1-1) made 18 saves on 20 shots for his second-career postseason win. Owuya (2-1) stopped 29 of 33 shots in the loss.
The Jackals and the Royals battle in Game 4 at 7:05 p.m. at First Arena on Saturday night. To reserve your seats call (607) 734-PUCK (7825), visit the First Arena Box Office, or log onto JackalsHockey.com.
The win was Elmira's first in the postseason in exactly one year, prevailing for their first playoff victory since Apr. 6, 2011 when the Jackals defeated the Greenville Road Warriors, 6-3, at First Arena...The Jackals are now 6-8 all-time at home in Kelly Cup Playoff action...Elmira is a combined 6-2-0-0 at home against Reading factoring in regular season play...The goal was Dineen's first in pro action...Radja's goals were his first two in the playoffs...Bellamy's goal was his first in the postseason as well...If Elmira wins on Saturday night, it would become the 13th team in ECHL history to force a Game 5 after trailing a best-of-five series, two games to none...Six teams have overcome a two games to none deficit in a best of five series in ECHL history to win a series...The comeback win was Elmira's first of the playoffs after posting 23 victories of that variety in the regular season, including nine against Reading
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UPCOMING FIRST ARENA EVENTS
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game 4
Elmira vs. Reading
Saturday, April 7
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game 5 (if necessary)
Elmira vs. Reading
Monday, April 9