The Monarchs got off to a hot start this season, but the glut of early games may have finally caught up to the boys in white, silver and black.
Will a trip out west restart their engines?
It’s Nov. 20, 2017, here’s your Manchester Monarchs Week in Review.
Manchester began November with 11 out of a possible 12 points, but couldn’t keep up the momentum in a morning matinee loss to the Reading Royals on Wednesday.
Saturday night also marked DEA Night, an evening celebrating those working to end the opioid crisis in New Hampshire.
For Monarchs head coach Richard Seeley, a two-time Community Service Award winner during his tenure as a player with the Monarchs, the night held particular significance.
“I think it’s paramount,” said Seeley. “As an organization, we need to be a solid part of this community and I think we have been for a long time now. We’ve put great effort in trying to improve the quality of life in Manchester. The fans come out to support us and we need to be there for them as community leaders.”
Top Star: Joel Lowry – He’s the little brother of Winnipeg Jet Adam Lowry, but Joel’s looking to make a name for himself this season, currently leading the team in points.
He added to that team lead with four points (1 goal, 3 assists) in this week’s four games.
Second Star: Matt Leitner – Leitner and Zac Lynch were just behind Lowry, each contributing three points. The tiebreaker? Leitner ended with two positive plus-minus performances in the four-game set, leading the team in shots on Friday.
Third Star: Charles Williams – To this point, Williams and Springfield loanee Evan Cowley have been alternating between the pipes and until this week, it looked like both netminders were indeed almost interchangeable.
While both goalkeepers recorded a pair of losses, Williams stood out in comparison in his appearances against a high-octane Worcester squad, allowing just five goals in those two appearances, some of which were not entirely his fault.
Despite the poor week, Williams is still fourth in save percentage and seventh in Goals Against Average in the ECHL among qualified goalkeepers.
Beyond the Blue Lines
On Nov. 17, Cory Ward got the call up to Ontario, replaced by Massachusetts native Tommy Kelley.
At the time of the transaction, Ward was third on the team in points (five goals, seven assists) behind Joel Lowry and Tony Cameranesi.
Kelley appeared in 86 games for the Boston University Terriers before graduating earlier this year. The Monarchs signed Kelley to a standard player contract, following two goals and three assists in six contests so far this fall with the Knoxville Ice Bears of the Southern Professional Hockey League.
Kelley celebrated his first Monarchs goal in the Saturday loss to Adirondack.
The Monarchs now head out to Utah to face the Utah Grizzlies for the first time in franchise history.
Like the Monarchs, the Grizzlies were also once an AHL franchise, with the Grizzlies shifting to the ECHL in 2005.
Both teams will meet in three games over the Thanksgiving week to conclude November, coming on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday respectively.
The puck is scheduled to drop at 7:05 MST in each of the three meetings.