Reading, PA– The Reading Royals of the ECHL, affiliate of the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League and the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League, won in overtime for the second consecutive game (and the fourth time in the last six playoff games) in Game Two of the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Final match-up against the Cincinnati Cyclones, 3-2, at Sovereign Center in Reading, Pennsylvania. Alex Berry buried the game winning goal to give Reading a two games to none lead in the ECHL Conference Finals.
Cincinnati scored on their first power play chance of the night 7:56 into the game when Josh MacFadden set one on a tee for a hot rocket off the top of the left circle by Mathieu Aubin. That blew by Riley Gill (win, 7-2-0, 44/46 in 73:42) high glove side for Aubin’s sixth of the playoff season.
Despite getting outshot 19-6 in the first period, Reading held on and tied the game 4:46 into the second when a rush up ice by T.J. Syner ignited an offensive zone scramble for the Royals. Ethan Cox set up Bobby Shea for a perfectly placed snapper from the right side of the high slot that beat Michael Houser (otl, 8-3-3, 27/30 in 73:18) for his second consecutive goal for the Royals and his second of the playoff season.
The Royals took their first lead of the game 1:20 into the third when Dustin Stevenson threw a seeing-eye wrister from the left point for his first in 79 total games with Reading (sixty-five regular season and fourteen in playoffs). Cincinnati re-tied the game 11:31 into the third while playing with the man advantage with a carbon-copy of their first power play goal of the night. Once again, McFadden set one on a tee for a big rocket by Aubin with the same result—a hot blast that blew by Gill to re-tie the game.
Alex Berry, playing in his team record career 29th playoff game as a Royal, buried the overtime game winner after Kirk MacDonald carried wide around the Cincinnati net and slid a diagonal-up pass into the right circle where Berry stepped up and uncorked a bomb by Houser for second of the playoff season.
The Royals and Cyclones play Game Three of the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Finals on Wednesday, May 8 at 7:35 pm, at U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. Ticket information for the ECHL’s Eastern Conference Finals matchup between the Reading Royals and the Cincinnati Cyclones can be obtained by calling the Royals office (610-898-PUCK) or by logging onto the Royals website: www.royalshockey.com.
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