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by Staff Writer / Los Angeles Kings
Reading, PA – The Reading Royals (27-11-3=57) scored early and never relinquished control of the scoreboard, despite giving up eleven power play opportunities in a wild and physical game against North Division rival Wheeling Nailers, as the Royals won by a final of 3-1. With this win, the Royals completed the two game home-and-home sweep of the Nailers and inched closer to the top slot in the North Division, which the Nailers still hold by one point.

The Royals struck first after a flurry of early offensive opportunities were repelled by Wheeling goaltender, Andy Franck. 3:29 into the first period, Mike Kompon broke into the offensive end on the right wing side and threw a brilliant cross-ice saucer to Dany Roussin, who was charging to the net on the left wing side. Roussin redirected the puck behind Franck for his fourteenth goal and twenty-eighth point in twenty-five games for the Royals. For Kompon, that assist was his fortieth of the season and extended his personal point streak to twenty-three games. In the second, the Royals scored the team's twelfth short-handed goal of the year, when Tyler Hanchuck stole a loose puck at the defensive blue line and fed Grant Jacobsen on the rush into the offensive end. Jacobsen fired a shot on goal, which Franck kicked out with the right pad; but he was unable to control the rebound, and Jeff State picked up the loose puck and back-handed it behind Frank for what proved to be the game winner at the 6:24 mark of the second period.

The Royals went up 3-0 at the 10:51 mark of the second, when Jacobsen stole a puck in the left circle of the offensive zone, eluded a defender, and fed Shay Stephenson in front of the Nailers' net. Stehpenson fired a hard snap shot on goal, and Franck made the original stop; however, the rebound ricocheted off one of his Nailer teammates and ended up in the net. The third period was punctuated by a continuous stream of physical pounding by both teams and the concomitant penalties that were called. The Nailers had seven separate power play chances in the third period, including two long sequences of five on three; and they scored on the second two skater advantage, when Mike Doyle fired one across the crease from the right wing side and Terry Virtue re-directed it into the net to make it 3-1, Reading. But that goal proved too little, too late, as the Royals were able to hold off the Nailers to run their current unbeaten streak to five games (4-0-1).
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