The Manchester Monarchs (34-21-7-4) scored four unanswered in the second period and then held off a valiant comeback effort from the Elmira Jackals (16-42-7-1) for a 7-4 decision in the middle game of a three-in-three on Pink in the Rink night at First Arena Saturday.
The Monarchs took it to the Jackals in the first period to open a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes. Playing in front of a goalie making his professional debut, Manchester spent most the first period in the offensive zone. They opened a 1-0 lead just 1:06 into the game on a turnaround shot by Cory Ward that got through traffic and went under the pads of Andy Iles. Then at 4:06 Manchester pulled off a nice pass play that was finished off by Tyler Elbrecht with a tap in into an open net for a 2-0 lead Manchester advantage.
The Jackals had a good start to the second period to get within one just over a minute into the period. Sebastien Sylvestre got the goal on the power play 1:09 into the period for his 22nd goal of the season with Nathan Moon and Casey Thrush picking up the assists to make it a 2-1 game.
That momentum didn’t last long as the Monarchs came back with a goal on the ensuing shift on a rebound near the right post by Peter Leblanc to make it 3-1 at 1:41. Cory Ward extended the lead to three with his second goal of the night, a power-play goal, at 10:04 to make it 4-1. A minute later Eric Schurhamer scored his first professional goal on a shot from the blue line for a 5-1 Monarchs lead.
That fifth goal chased Iles and brought in Jason Kasdorf, who was greeted with a power-play goal on a one-timer by Colton Saucerman at 15:17 to put Manchester ahead 6-1, which is where the teams remained heading into the third period.
The Jackals attempted a third period comeback with a strong 20 minutes. Kenton Miller extended his goal-scoring streak to five games with a one-timer from the left wing circle on a pass from Thrush just 2:39 into the third, making it 6-2. It became a 6-3 game when Davis Vandane scored a power-play goal on a point shot that found its way through a maze of bodies at 13:33.
Elmira got within two shortly after when Sylvestre scored his second goal of the night while the Jackals had an extra attacker on the ice. He teed up a one-timer from the right circle for his 23rd goal of the season, matching a career-high and making it a 6-4 game at 17:36.
Manchester survived the push and iced the game with an empty-net goal from Mario Puskarich at 18:15, giving the Monarchs a 7-4 win.
( Courtesy: Elmira Jackals)