The Indy Fuel had one of their better defensive efforts of the season, but fell 2-1 in the second half of a back-to-back in Reading Sunday afternoon.
Reading scored two goals in the first 2:27 to take a 2-0 lead. Justin Holl scored his second goal in as many days at the 14:00 mark of the first, but Reading goaltender Martin Ouellette stopped 39 Fuel shots to give the Royals the win.
The 40 shots launched by the Fuel were a season high.
Reading’s Cam Reid scored his seventh of the season at 1:50 of the first period on the power play to give the Royals a lead. Thirty-seven seconds later, Andrew Johnston scored an even-strength goal to make it 2-0.
Holl’s goal came on the PP from Rhett Bly and Robert Czarnik — the latter adding to his team-leading point total of 14. Despite several good chances, including 19 shots in an end-to-end second period, the Fuel were unable to get the equalizer.
The Fuel are now 3-8-3 on the year.
Cody Reichard came on in relief of Sean Bonar and stopped all 30 shots he faced.
- Martin Ouellette (REA) 39 saves, win
- Andrew Johnston (REA) GWG
- Cody Reichard (IND) 30 saves, 0 GA
- Indy is now 2-4-3 in one-goal games … factor out empty-netters, and the Fuel have played 11 one-goal games in their 14 starts. They’re right there in every contest.
- Indy kept pressing, launching a season-high 40 shots, including 19 in the second period.
- Defensemen have provided an offensive spark. Holl has now scored two goals in two games. All four Fuel goals this weekend were by players listed as defensemen — although Kirill Gotovets’ two goals came skating on the wing.
- More players return — Klarc Wilson made his return to the lineup after being out a couple of weeks a day after Jamie Wise returned to the lineup. Sean Bonar made his first appearance since Oct. 25, although he played just 2:27 after allowing two goals on two shots.
- All of the lines were active in this game — Matt White had a team-high six shots on goal. Robert Czarnik had five shots. Rhett Bly had four (as did Holl from the blueline).
- Czarnik’s assist gave him points in four of his last five games. He’s tallied a point in eight of the 13 games he has played.
For the second straight game, Bembridge-White-Klotz started the game. Klarc Wilson’s return allowed the Fuel to go back to six defensemen and allow Gotovets to move back to the blueline.
Forwards: Bembridge-White-Klotz, Wilson, Cullen, Chelios, Bly, Duco, Wise, Czarnik
Defensemen: Franzon-Gotovets, Brisebois-Jones, Fournier-Holl
Goaltenders: Bonar, Reichard
Next up: The Fuel begin a three-game weekend Thursday night in Fort Wayne, before returning home Friday and Saturday to face Cincinnati, two games that will start a five-game homestand. Both of the games in Indy will begin at 7:35 p.m. All three games will be broadcast on CBS Sports 1430 AM, and the two home games will be televised on HTSN/6.2.