Reading, PA – The Reading Royals (14-4-1=29) took a 4-3 lead into the third period but couldn't muster the energy needed to repel the comeback efforts of the Long Beach Ice Dogs, who beat the Royals 5-4 in a Sunday matinee at the Sovereign Center. With both teams playing their third game in essentially two-and-a-half days, the up and down play through the first two periods seemed to have more impact on the Royals, and the Ice Dogs were able to tie things early in the period and then capitalize on a five-on-three power play to pick up the game winner and earn the split in the weekend series.
As they did the night before, the Ice Dogs got on the board first when Ash Goldie scored his second first goal in as many games at the 2:35 mark of the first period. The Royals responded with a couple of goals by T.J. Kemp, the first of which came on the power play when he was able to float down the slot, fake one shot and then rip one high to the short side that beat Long Beach goaltender, Greg Hewitt. 5:49 later, Kemp scored his second of the afternoon when Mike Kompon threw a beautiful diagonal feed off the right wing half wall to Kemp who had snuck up on the back door to tap it in.
Long Beach tied it up at two 1:19 into the second when Kevin Ulanski picked up his first of two power play goals in the game when he snuck a puck from the side of the net under Royals defenseman Eric Werner (who had gone down to block the shot) and through goaltender Barry Brust. The Royals responded 54 seconds later, when Doug Christiansen chopped a rebound high over top of Hewitt to give the Royals a 3-2 lead. The Ice Dogs tied things again 1:46 after that, when Ulanski scored his second–again from the right side of the net, when he tried to send one out front, it bounced off a Royals' player and right back onto Ulanski's stick, and he quickly stuffed it in. But the Royals immediately took the lead back when Greg Hogeboom fired one from in front of the Ice Dogs' net while he was being taken down by an Ice Dog defenseman that beat Hewitt.
Early in the third, Long Beach tied things again (at four) when Blake Robson sprung Ash Goldie off to the races for a breakaway goal at the 2:07 mark of the period. The Royals had several chances to take the lead again–particularly on a power play sequence that resulted in a relatively long five-on-three opportunity–but they couldn't find pay dirt. And when Long Beach got their own five-on-three later in the period, they didn't waste the chance as Christian Larrivee, standing essentially unguarded in front of the Royals' net, finished off a nice feed from Justin Aikens for what turned out to be the game winner with 7:38 remaining in the game.