Lions drop 4-2 decision to Royals
The Lions were looking to end their two-game losing streak Saturday afternoon facing the Reading Royals. Head coach Marc-André Bergeron and Co. also had an opportunity to avenge Friday night’s loss to their Pennsylvanian visitors.
Trois-Rivières’ Cédric Montminy had a great scoring opportunity early in the game but Reading netminder Pat Nagle prevented the Lions’ captain from finding the back of the net by making a pad save. Moments later the Lions suffered from bad luck when the Royals’ Alec Butcher was alone in front of Trois-Rivières’ goaltender Philippe Desrosiers. The Lions’ goalie made the initial save, but the puck straddled the goal line and when attempting to clear the puck from harm’s way Brett Stapley accidentally redirected the puck into the Lions’ goal, making it 1-0 in favor of the visitors. The Royals dominated throughout the first period with 14 shots on goal, but Desrosiers kept the Lions in the game with several key saves.
The second period can be summed up by just two words: Pat Nagle. The Royals’ goalkeeper was sensational, stopping all 14 shots he faced. He made an incredible glove save when Montminy pounced on a rebound. Then the Lions’ Anthony Beauregard took advantage of an offensive zone turnover, but once again Nagle did not back down, maintaining the Royals’ 1-0 lead. The Lions had a five-on-three power play towards the end of the second period, but Nagle stood on his head and made two outstanding saves against Nicolas Larivière and Nicolas Guay.
The Lions took advantage of a power play opportunity early in the third period to even the score. Stationed in the slot, Montminy capitalized on a rebound to score his fifth goal of the season and the teams were back to square one. But the Royals also benefited when they had the man advantage: First it was Evan Barratt scoring into a wide-open net and then Dominic Cormier finished-off a quality set-up from Shane Sellar and Jacob Gaucher to double the visitors' lead. The Lions tried to mount a comeback in the game’s final minutes when Beauregard let loose a cannon to narrow the gap to a goal with just over two minutes remaining. Unfortunately for fans at Colisée Vidéotron, the Royals’ Garrett McFadden sealed the game’s outcome with an empty net goal, making the final score 4-2.
The Lions have now lost three games in a row. Trois-Rivières will be back on home ice Wednesday night before taking the holiday break.