Monarchs fall on Sunday after atrocious second period

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MANCHESTER – Sunday didn’t hold a second win in a row for the Manchester Monarchs, as they fell 6-2 in an afternoon matinee to the Reading Royals.

Jordan LaVallee-Smotherman in green (credit – Rich Tilton)

The Monarchs ended the first period with a 2-1 lead, as Matt Schmalz and Jordan LaVallee-Smotherman answered Matt Wilkins early goal for Reading.

But that’s when things turned south for Manchester, with Reading scoring three goals in the first eight minutes of the second period, chasing starting goaltender Branden Komm from the contest.

Reading would add goals from Michael Huntebrinker and Chris McCarthy before the period concluded and the Monarchs would be unable to respond, despite almost doubling Reading’s shots-on-goal tally in the third period.

The five goals were the most the Monarchs have given up in any one period this season.

Unlike Saturday night’s superlative special teams performance, the penalty kill became a weakness for Manchester on Sunday, allowing two goals during Reading’s five power play opportunities. This comes in spite of the fact that Reading was 24th in the ECHL in power play effectiveness on the road coming into Sunday’s contest.

With the loss, Mancheser (22-13-3-1) remains one point ahead of Adirondack in the ECHL North Division standings after Adirondack lost a 6-5 decision to Brampton.

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.