READING, Pa. – The Reading Royals made sure there would be no overtime heroics this time around. From the start of the game until the final buzzer the Royals were in control of Game Two of the Kelly Cup finals winning in convincing fashion 4-0 to lead their series over the Stockton Thunder setting up three must win games on Stockton’s part. Riley Gill earned the shutout, his league leading third shutout, on 27 shots. The Royals lead the league in shutouts in the playoffs and look like a team wanting to close things out on the road, but Stockton is 8-1-1 on home ice.
Reading got goals from four different sources and contained the Thunder the whole night, especially once the Royals got on the scoreboard. Alex Berry got the game winner followed by Brett Flemming, T.J. Syner, and Evan Barlow. The Royals are half way home and despite having potentially the next three games on the road, you can bet as much as they would love to win it on home ice for the fans, closing things out on the road will do just find thank you.
Stockton got to the finals by winning on the road but losing Game One might have cost them this series. The Thunder had to win their last two series without home ice advantage over Idaho and Alaska, who had the league’s best record. Needless to say coming into the finals Stockton was far from intimidated. They haven’t played like it but in Game Two they were frustrated by the lack of offensive chances in the third period always down four goals. Reading held Stockton to only seven shots on goal in the third.
Fortunately for Stockton the series isn’t over, but if they lose Game Three you can bet Reading won’t blow another series when leading 3-0. Lord knows media types like us and Head Coach Larry Courville, won’t have to remind anyone on the roster about 2010 against Cincinnati.
Stockton has played fairly even in both games and will look to crank things up right from the drop of the puck Tuesday night at the Stockton Arena. Anything less than an all out effort and expect this to be a short series, as in the four game type.
Contact the author at Brian.Jennings@prohockeynews.com