Reading, Pa. – The Evansville IceMen handed the Reading Royals their first defeat since October 28 behind Right Winger Dan Gendur’s two-goal performance on Saturday night.
While Gendur provided the offense for the IceMen with goal numbers three and four on the season, IceMen Goaltender Paul Karpowich provided the backbone, saving 37-of-39 Reading shots. Earning a .949 save percentage, Karpowich was voted the game’s first star.
Playing in only his second game with the IceMen was Forward Carlo Finucci, who gave Evansville a lead early for a second consecutive game. Finucci’s first goal of the season came just :28 seconds into the first period and was assisted by IceMen Left Winger Josh Beaulieu. With his lone assist of the game, Beaulieu is second on the team with 14 points on the season (7G, 7A).
Evansville’s lead vanished moments later when Reading Defenseman Patrick Wellar found the back of the net for the first time this season. The only equalizing goal scored by Reading on Saturday night came 2:59 into the first period and was assisted by Forwards David Marshall and Kirk MacDonald.
Gendur tallied Evansville’s first power play goal since Center and team captain Todd Robinson went down with a lower-body injury against the Royals last Sunday night. Defenseman and acting team captain Matt Gens assisted on Gendur’s go-ahead score that occurred at the 16:19 point of the opening period. Also assisting on the goal was IceMen Center Dale Mahovsky. Gens was voted the game’s third star.
In the process of being outshot in the second period, 16-5, Evansville added to its lead when Gendur scored his second goal of the game. Two notable assists were given on the game-winning goal for the IceMen. Newcoming Forward Jim McKenzie was credited with his first helper as an IceMen. Also helping on the prevailing goal was Karpowich, who was credited his first career assist as a pro. Gendur received the game’s second star honor.
With a 3-1 lead heading into the third period, the IceMen would be tested in the final frame once again by the Royals. Reading Forward Barry Almeida cut the IceMen lead to a single goal 13:35 into the third period. Receiving the lone assist on the goal was Reading Forward Ethan Cox.
The IceMen fought off two hooking penalties committed by Centers Nathan Moon and Mahovsky that occurred within the final ten minutes of regulation on their way to securing the victory. The IceMen penalty killing unit scathed off all six power play opportunities presented to Reading.
Adding Evansville’s fourth goal of the game was Center Jason Dale, who tallied his second goal of the season. The empty-netter was assisted by Moon.
Evansville entered both the second and third periods against Reading on the power play, but were unable to capitalize on either attempt. Reading Defenseman Bryant Molle was tagged for interference at the 18:29 mark of the first period, giving the IceMen :31 seconds of power play time beginning the second period. Molle concluded the second period with another infraction, this time for tripping. The penalty came with 1:02 remaining in the middle frame, giving Evansville :58 seconds with a man advantage entering the third stanza.
The IceMen power play unit finished the game with an efficient success rate of 25%, however, scoring one goal on four man advantage opportunities.
The losing goalie was Reading Brandon Anderson who was pulled in the second period after allowing three Evansville goals on ten shots. His save percentage equaled a dismal .700 percent. Anderson’s replacement was Philipp Grubauer, who saved all of the six shots he faced.
The IceMen halted the Royals’ longest winning streak in franchise history at eleven games, and in the process, extended a winning streak of their own. The IceMen have now prevailed the victor in four straight Saturday night games.
The IceMen improve to 19(6-12-1) and gain two points in the North Division standings, giving them 13 on the season. Reading falls to 19(12-6-1) but remains atop the Atlantic Division in the Easter Conference with 25 points.
Evansville will head to Cincinnati to play two games in as many nights against the North Division leading Cyclones. Game one will be played on Wednesday, Nov. 28 at 6:35 p.m. CST and can be heard live on ‘Magic 98.5’ FM or 1400 AM WEOA.