A Royal Mess

(PR) Reading, PA – Despite falling behind 1-0 and being out-shot 52-25, the Reading Royals used four goals spaced 13:28 apart to defeat the Trenton Devils, 4-2, Friday at Sovereign Center.

Reading goalie Ben Scrivens was the game’s first star, with 50 saves on 52 shots, after the Spruce Grove, Alberta native was sent down by the AHL-Toronto Marlies earlier in the day. Jared Ross and Yannick Riendeau contributed a goal and assist each, with the Royals becoming the first ECHL team to break the 60-point mark by improving their record to 28-11-2-3.

Trevor Kell tallied his second two-point game (1g, 1a) in his last three contests, but the Devils lost their third straight and dropped to 15-24-1-3. Jeff Lerg took the loss after making 21 saves. Lerg’s record now stands at 6-5-0. Dave Leaderer assisted on Kell’s goal, his sixth assist in the last six games and his 22 points is fourth most on the team.

Despite being doubled up on the scoreboard, the Devils controlled the tempo for most of the night. The Devils took the game’s first lead, too, when Trevor Kell beat Scrivens to the high glove side with a quick wrist shot, less than five minutes after the opening puck drop. Kell put himself in excellent shooting position by faking out Scrivens with a quick stutter-step at the left-wing circle, after the Devils captain had gained possession in the neutral zone.

Even though the Devils dominated possession of the puck and held a 23-9 shots advantage in the first period, Casey Haines scored at 16:07 to lock the teams in a dead heat after 20 minutes.

Yannick Riendeau gave the Royals a lead they never relinquished, beating Lerg on a breakaway fake, 1:03 into the second period. Jared Ross and Chris Blight scored to extend Reading’s lead to 4-1 after two periods, despite a 41-14 Trenton shot advantage.

The Devils thinned Reading’s lead to 4-2, 4:29 into the third period, when Jeff Prough scored his fifth goal in the last four games by deflecting a point-shot by Justin Pender past Scrivens. Trevor Kell notched the secondary assist in his first game back from a three-game stint on injured reserve. Although Trenton continued to pepper Scrivens by launching 16 of its 52 shots in the third period, the former Cornell University goaltender held the Devils at bay, as Reading won 4-2.

With the Royals holding a 5-3 lead in the season series, Trenton and Reading will face off each of the next two days at Sun National Bank Center. The puck drops Saturday at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday at 1:00 p.m.


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