The Manchester Monarchs started the scoring early, and Cole Kehler made 35 saves in a 5-2 win over the Maine Mariners on Saturday night, Feb. 23, 2019, in ECHL play at SNHU Arena.

The Monarchs (29-24-1-2) opened the scoring at 3:59 of the first period when Kevin Dufour scored his 20th goal of the season and first in a Monarchs uniform. They doubled the lead at 5:04 of the first period when Drake Rymsha netted his seventh goal of the season.

The Monarchs went up 3-0 at 9:28 of the second period with Chris Carlisle’s second goal of the season.

The Mariners (28-25-0-1) got on the board at 12:48 of the second when Dwyer Schantz ripped a shot from the left circle.

The Mariners then cut the lead to one at 10:02 of the third period when Charles-Eric Legare scored his first goal of the season.

The Monarchs made it 4-2 on a power-play goal by Nic Pierog at 17:45 of the third and Manchester scored an empty-net goal just 42 seconds later, when Sam Kurker beat the Mariners defense to a loose puck and slid a shot into the open net to finish the scoring, 5-2.

Tim Shoup and David Kolomatis notched two assists each for Manchester. Maine’s Connor LaCouvee made 29 saves.

The Monarchs return to action Wednesday when they host the Worcester Railers at SNHU Arena. The Adirondack Thunder visit the Monarchs on Friday night.