Monarchs take 2-0 series lead; Game 3 Sunday - LA Kings Insider

The Manchester Monarchs chased Portland Pirates starter Mike McKenna after 30 seconds with Michael Mersch and Jordan Weal goals and used a four-goal third period barrage to streak to a 6-2 win in Game 2 of the clubs’ Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.

“We talked about it yesterday,” Head Coach Mike Stothers said. “We wanted to start quickly and get them on their heels. It was a good start.”

The Monarchs lead the best-of-five series two-nothing, with Game 3 scheduled for a 5:00 p.m. local start today in Portland, Maine.

For Mersch, his goal 20 seconds into the game, bookended by a third period empty-net goal, continued the Illinois native’s torrid stretch of late season hockey. With two goals, three points, a plus-five rating and five shots on goal through two playoff games, he now has 13 goals, 25 points, a plus-21 rating and 79 shots on goal in the 21 regular season and playoff games dating back to March 8. Click here to read the good things Mike O’Connell, Senior Advisor / Development Coach had to say about Mersch on Friday; after commending the 22-year-old’s ability to drive to the net, he did just that to get Manchester on the scoreboard early Saturday night.

Jeff Schultz – deemed to be “close” after Game 1 – re-entered the lineup for Manchester in place of Kevin Raine, though David Van der Gulik and Josh Gratton did not play on Saturday after having left Thursday’s game early. 2014 first round pick Adrian Kempe made his AHL playoff debut and registered one shot on goal and a plus-one rating. Ryan Horvat also entered the lineup – his picture is below – and tallied two penalty minutes and one shot on goal. Andrew Crescenzi was assessed a five-minute boarding major and game misconduct in the second period. Nick Shore recorded three assists in the win and now has four assists and a plus-six rating through two playoff games.

Having taken leads into the third period in both playoff games thus far, Manchester has done a good job shutting the door by out-shooting Portland 18-7 through the first two games.

For the live audio of today’s game at 2:00 p.m. PT, click here.

Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
1-Manchester Monarchs vs. 8-Portland Pirates

Game 1 – Thu., Apr. 23 – MANCHESTER 5, Portland 2
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 25 – MANCHESTER 6, Portland 2
Game 3 – Sun., Apr. 26 – Manchester at Portland, 5:00
*Game 4 – Thu., Apr. 30 – Manchester at Portland, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sat., May 2 – Portland at Manchester, 7:00

Box score, courtesy of

Open House at Fenway with game between Florida A&M v North Carolina Central.
-photo credits: Steve Babineau / Manchester Monarchs

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Jake Muzzin

#6 | 6′ 3″ | 216 lb | Age: 27

Born: Feb 21, 1989
Birthplace: Woodstock, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Left


Muzzin was drafted in 2007 by the Pittsburgh Penguins, before signing to the Kings in 2010. He has since become the first Woodstock, Ontario professional athlete to win a major sports trophy.

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left


As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right


Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left


Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.