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Monarchs fall to Royals, 6-2

By MATTHEW JOHNSON
Monarchs Vice President of Brand and Marketing

January 15. 2018 6:08AM
Jessica Dizonno, visiting from Florida, hold up her daughter six-month-old Aurora Peters, during an intermission at the Manchester Monarchs hockey game at the SNHU Arena in Manchester Sunday. Dizonno is up visiting her parents in Meredith. (Mark Bolton/Union Leader)



MANCHESTER – The Manchester Monarchs allowed five goals in the second period, and fell to the Reading Royals, 6-2, to cap a three-game weekend at the SNHU Arena on NH Highway Safety Night.

The Monarchs (22-13-3-1) dropped their first contest to Royals (21-17-2-0) since Nov. 15.

The Royals opened the scoring at 4:56 of the first period when Matt Wilkins scored his 5th goal of the season. The Royals entered the Monarchs zone on a 3-on-2 along the right boards, where Dillan Fox found Wilkins in the high slot. Wilkins corralled the puck and sent a wrist shot over the glove of Monarchs goaltender, Branden Komm, to put the Royals up, 1-0.

The Monarchs answered when Matt Schmalz scored his 11th goal of the year at 7:08 of the first period to tie the game. Schmalz picked up a missed shot from Matt Buckles, and capitalized on Royals goaltender, John Muse, who was on the ground, to even the score, 1-1.

The Monarchs converted on a 5-on-3 power play with a goal from Jordan LaValle-Smotherman at 17:31 of the first period, to make the score, 2-1. On a tic-tac-toe play, Justin Agosta slid the puck to Spencer Watson low in the left-wing circle, who then found LaVallee-Smotherman along the right goal line for a one-timer over the glove of Muse for his 17th goal of the season.

Michael Huntebrinker tied the game for the Royals at 2:55 of the second period when he scored his 12th goal of the season. Brian Morgan dropped a pass to Huntebrinker in the slot, where he fired a wrist shot over the stick of Komm, to tie the game, 2-2.

The Royals extended their lead with a goal from Dillan Fox at 4:07 of the second period, to make the score, 3-2. After receiving a pass from Mark Bennett along the right boards, Fox dragged the puck in front of the net before switching to his backhand for a low backhander past Komm, to score his 1st goal of the season.

The Royals extended their lead when Nolan Zajac scored his 9th goal of the season at 5:55 of the second period. Matt Willows started the scoring play by poking a pass to Chris McCarthy in the slot where he took a shot that Komm saved. Zajac was in the right place at the right time, and picked up the rebound and sent a wrister past the glove of the Monarchs goaltender to put the Royals up, 4-2.

The Royals took a three-goal lead on the power play at 8:03 of the second period on Huntebrinker’s second goal of the night. Dillan Fox threw the puck to the front of the net from the left goal line, where Huntebrinker beat Komm five-hole for his 13th goal of the season.

The Royals cushioned their lead with a power-play goal from McCarthy at 13:49 of the second period. Zajac found McCarthy in the left-wing circle for a one-timed slapshot over the glove of new Monarchs goaltender, Charles Williams, for his 13th goal of the season.

The Monarchs return to action Friday, Jan. 19 (7 p.m.) when they welcome the Wheeling Nailers to SNHU for the first time this season.

NOTES: Matt Schmalz recorded his 20th professional point ... The five goals allowed in the second period were the most given up by the Monarchs this year ... Charles Williams replaced Branden Komm in net at 11:57 of the second period ... Mikkel Aagaard and Zac Lynch both played in their 100th professional games


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