MANCHESTER, NH – The Manchester Monarchs put on a dominating performance last night at SNHU Arena, defeating the Brampton Beast 6-1 in game four of the North Division Finals. Manchester now has a 3-1 lead in their North Division Finals series and are now one win away from their first Conference Finals berth as members of the ECHL.
The Monarchs scored their first goal of the game at 11:40 of the first period when Matt Leitner potted a rebound past Beast goaltender Zach Fucale for his fifth goal of the playoffs to go up 1-0.
The Monarchs extended their lead to 2-0 on a power play goal with 3:20 remaining in the first period. Daniel Doremus took a shot that deflected off the leg of Beast defenseman Brandon Marino‘s leg and into the net to make it 2-0.
Manchester added to their lead and continued their power play hot streak in the late stages of the second period. David Kolomatis took a wrist shot that was deadened after being tipped by Daniel Doremus’ stick. Kevin Morris was able to find the loose puck and put it past Fucale to make it 3-0.
The Beast got on the scoreboard to make it 3-1 at 7:32 into the third period. Chris Auger made a pass to Luc-Oliver Blain, who tipped it past Monarchs goaltender Sam Brittain to make it 3-1. That would be all Brampton would get.
Ashton Rome scored his first of two goals of the night at 10:17 into the third period. Tyler Sikura made a centering pass to Cory Ward. Ward shot a one-timer and Rome found the rebound to make it 4-1.
The Monarchs scored their finals two goals of the night with empty-net goals. Tyler Sikura scored a short-handed goal into the empty net at 14:29. Rome would score his second goal of the evening when he came out of the penalty box after accepting a pass from Daniel Doremus and put it in the yawning net to make it 6-1.
When the dust settled, 11 different Monarchs players ended up on the score sheet and the six-goal outburst ties their playoff high.
Monarchs goaltender Sam Brittain made 26 saves en route to his third straight win in the series. Brittain may very well be the MVP of this round, having allowed just five goals (three of those coming in game one) on 110 shots (.955 save percentage and a 1.22 goals against average) in 241 minutes played.
Beast goaltender Zach Fucale also made 26 saves in the loss.
If the Beast can win tonight, the series will shift back to Brampton for game six on Friday. The puck will drop tonight at SNHU Arena at 7 P.M.