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ROYALS CLIPPED BY WHEELING, 4-1

by Staff Writer / Los Angeles Kings
Reading, PA – Playing their fifth game in six days, the Reading Royals (30 – 29 – 6 = 66; 5th North Division), ran out of gas in a third period in which they gave up three goals to lose to the Wheeling Nailers, 4-1. Reading scored first and out-shot the Nailers 34-25, but could not find pay dirt down the stretch against Nailer goaltender Andy Franck (22 – 24 – 4; 33/34). The Royals' goaltender, Jeff Pietrasiak (14 – 16 – 2; 21/25) took the loss.


Reading got on the board 10:39 into the game while working on the team's second power play of the night. After winning an offensive zone face-off, Joe Zappala fed the puck to the mid-slot where Jon Snowden took control and ripped a hard slap shot on net. Franck made the stop, but the rebound fell to the top of the crease, where Charlie Kronschnabel took control and stuffed it around and behind Franck for his first goal as a professional. Wheeling tied the game at the 15:39 mark of the first on their first power play of the night, when Sean Collins, who ended the game with three assists, fed defenseman Ryan Moren in the high slot. Moren drilled a low wrist shot that beat Pietrasiak low to the stick side for his ninth of the season.

After a spirited but scoreless second period, the Nailers broke the 1-1 deadlock at the 7:12 mark of the third when Paul Bissonnette carried the puck deep into the Royals' defensive zone in the right corner. After a scrum, he dropped the puck up the wall where Adam Edinger took control and forced his way to the top of the right circle, drilling a snap shot under the bar at the for his seventh goal of the season.

Wheeling opened up a two goal lead at the 10:15 mark of the third when Jordan Cameron chipped a puck from the defensive zone off the glass and into the neutral zone, where Collins took control and spun a pass around his body and through a Royals' defender sending forward Ned Havern on a clean break. Havern carried into the slot half-way into the offensive zone and fired a wrist shot that slipped through Pietrasiak for his fourteenth goal of the season. Late in the third–with just 1:52 remaining–the Nailers picked up further insurance while on the team's third power play opportunity of the game. Wheeling worked a beautiful tic-tac-toe passing play close to the Royals' net from Havern to Collins to Cameron who was free for a back door tap in for his twenty-third goal of the season, which put the icing on this win for the Nailers.

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