PORTLAND, Maine – The Manchester Monarchs now control their own playoff destiny, taking a crucial 6-2 victory over the Maine Mariners on Sunday afternoon.
Manchester opened proceedings with three unanswered goals, beginning with a power play score from Tony Cameranesi, followed by scores from Pavel Jenys and Stepan Falkovsky.
Brycen Martin did get the hosts on the board with a power play goal before the first intermission, but could not narrow the lead further in the second period. Instead, Drake Rymsha sent a shot through the legs of Maine goaltender Chris Nell just past the midpoint of the period to build the lead, with the Monarchs holding Maine at bay at the other end despite being outshot by a 2-to-1 margin.
Jack Nevins and Jenys added goals for Manchester in the third period, with Jenys’ goal followed by one final Maine goal by Dillan Fox.
After Sunday’s action, Manchester (35-27-2-2) now sits in sole possession of third place in the ECHL’s North Division, one point ahead of Maine for the final spot and two points ahead of Brampton for entry into the post-season.
They now have just six regular season games left, and winning them all would place them beyond the reach Brampton, Worcester and Reading, the three teams currently on the wrong end of the divisional playoff hunt.
Manchester now heads to Brampton for a critical test on Wednesday, with puck drop scheduled for 11 a.m.