Wheeling Nailers Crash Reading Royals’ Scout Night

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Posted March 9, 2013
Peter Delmas proved a nearly impenetrable stone wall for the Wheeling Nailers tonight.

Peter Delmas proved a nearly impenetrable stone wall for the Wheeling Nailers tonight (All Photos Credit: M. Richter).

It was a sold out crowd in Reading, with “Scout Night” providing the encouragement the community needed to pack the Sovereign Center (7,162 tickets sold).  Unfortunately, even that extra moral support couldn’t help the Royals when it came to their Atlantic Division rivals, the Wheeling Nailers (affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins).  The loudest (and largest) crowd of the last 3 years saw a 3-1 loss in regulation, thanks in large part to Wheeling’s goaltender, Peter Delmas.

The Nailers scored just 4:26 into the first period (Cam Fergus, from Zuverinski & Lenes), and it was a controlled downhill slide from there.  David Vallorani, who is currently fourth in the ECHL in rookie scoring, kept the Royals from being shut-out, scoring a late goal with help from Joel Champagne and Stanislav Galiev.

David Vallorani shows off Reading's St. Patrick's Day Warmup Jersey.

David Vallorani shows off Reading’s St. Patrick’s Day Warmup Jersey.

It should not be said that the Royals never had a chance.  They had six power-play opportunities, in addition to outshooting the visiting Nailers 34-23, but a rocky first period had them chasing their tails for the rest of the evening.  Riley Gill, who saw his second start for the Royals since signing with them recently, was in net for two of the goals against – the third was an empty-netter in the last minute of the game.

The Royals are still stable at the top of the Eastern Conference Standings, so a single loss isn’t the blow it would have been at this time last year, but it does reflect the team’s struggle to address the cost of frequent and numerous call-ups – many of whom simply have never returned from the AHL.  They’ll have the chance to even the score against Wheeling on Wednesday, when the two teams again face off on Reading ice.

T.J. Syner draws one of Reading's 6 Power Play opportunities.

T.J. Syner draws one of Reading’s 6 Power Play opportunities.  None resulted in a successful conversion.

Prospect Notes: With Brandon Anderson up in Hershey, the Caps only have two players currently in Reading – Forward Stanislav Galiev and third-year defenseman Dustin Stevenson.

Down the Road: In Hershey, the Bears fell to the Norfolk Admirals 4-1 in regulation.  Dany Sabourin was in net, and Jon DiSalvatore had the lone Hershey goal (assisted by Stafford & Taffe).

M. Richter

M. Richter

Associate Editor at Capitals Outsider
Em is a fan of hockey first and individual teams second, with geographical ties that cross the NHL. She was born in the Midwest, raised along the East Coast, and graduated from a university in Western Canada. A firm believer in context above all else, and a card-carrying on-ice official with USA Hockey, she splits her time between the big picture and the details. When not covering the AHL and ECHL for Caps Outsider, her photography can be found on Behance and Flickr. She also occasionally chimes in about the Hershey Bears on the Power Play Post Show.
M. Richter

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