While the season is still young, the Manchester Monarchs have shown some flaws this season, flaws that did not show up in Virginia on Wednesday night.
There, the Monarchs earned a 7-1 victory over the Norfolk Admirals in the first of three games this week between the two teams.
Only Brady Vail’s wrister before the end of the first period prevented Manchester netminder Charles Williams from grabbing his first professional shutout.
Jordan LaVallee-Smotherman outscored the Admirals on his own with a pair of goals, the second time he’s done so this season. He was joined on the scoresheet by Kevin Morris, Sam Kurker, Matt Marcinew, Zac Lynch and Cory Ward.
All of Manchester’s goal scorers also got at least one assist except for Marcinew and Morris, with Matt Leiner ending the night with three assists, bringing his tally to eight so far on the season.
Once again, the Monarchs outshot their opponent, something they’ve done in each game during the current campaign. This time though, the disparity was more pronounced than recent games, with Manchester ending the game with a 40-17 shots-on-goal advantage.
The Monarchs also improved on one of their weaknesses: the power play. Both of LaVallee-Smotherman’s goals came while Admirals were serving penalties as the Monarchs finished 3-for-9 on the night on the power play, almost equaling their entire output so far this season.
Manchester (4-3-0-1) and Norfolk (2-6-0-0) meet again on Friday night at 7 p.m.