CINCINNATI, Ohio – The Reading Royals (11-6) jumped out to a 2-0 lead and never looked back as they defeated the Cincinnati Cyclones (9-8) by a 3-1 final score at U.S. Bank Arena on Saturday night. The loss for Cincinnati eliminated them from the Kelly Cup Playoffs, as the Royals took the best-of-seven series 4-1
After a scoreless first period, the Royals were first to light the lamp. At 7:08 into the middle frame, Ian O'Connor fired a wrist shot from the right circle that sailed under goaltender Michael Houser's (L, 17 saves, 9-8) right arm and into the net. Reading Forward Kirk MacDonald followed that strike at the 11:29 mark by scoring a shorthanded goal through Houser's legs on a partial breakaway. Dan Eves finally got the home team on the scoreboard with less than four minutes remaining in the second. The Cincinnati forward found the puck on the left side of the crease during a large scrum and lifted it over net minder Riley Gill (W, 23 saves, 9-3). Reading carried its 2-1 lead into the second intermission.
T.J. Syner gave the Royals an insurance goal with 8:56 expired in the final stanza on a turnaround shot from the low slot. In the final minutes, Cincinnati pulled Houser in an attempt to rally. Unfortunately, they would not find the net again as the Royals sealed the series with the 3-1 triumph.