Mantha Notches Hat Trick in RiverKings Exhibition Loss

By: David Schmoll
October 18, 2013

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - The Mississippi RiverKings had a two-goal lead after one, but could not hang on as they fell to the Huntsville Havoc 5-4 in the first game of their two-game exhibition set.

Huntsville wasted no time finding the net. Mike Gurtler picked up his first goal of the pre-season after he put away his own rebound past Matt Krahn to put the home-team ahead just 49 seconds into regulation.

Midway through the period, the RiverKings answered. Devin Mantha tied the game at one 7:02 into the period before adding his second and third goals of the game at the 10:31 and 16:51 marks to send the visitors to the lockerroom ahead by two after 20 minutes.

After a stop-and-go start to the second, the Havoc scored two goals in 47 seconds. Nick Lazorko beat Dan McWhinney, who replaced Matt Krahn at the 10 minute mark of the second, over the blocker to cut the lead to one, before Corey Fulton's shot off the face off slipped past to tie the game at three. Huntsville took the lead at the 18:55 mark when miscommunication by the RiverKings defense resulted in the puck deflecting off the skate of McWhinney and into their own net to give the Havoc the 4-3 lead heading into the second. Matt Singleton was credited with the power play goal.

The two teams traded goals in the third as Mike Gurtler notched his second goal of the game for Huntsville at the 8:10 mark. Corey Banfield tallied his first goal of the pre-season as he took the Tyler Melancon pass and beat Jesse Kallachy to bring the RiverKings within one, but the visitors ultimately fell 5-4 in their exhibition opener.

Matt Krahn stopped 19 of 20 shots in the first 30:26 of the game for the RiverKings, while Dan McWhinney stopped 19 of 23 in 29:00 of relief. Brad Phillips turned away 16 of 19 shots in 40 minutes before Jesse Kallechy steered aside 9 of 10 in the third period for Huntsville

The RiverKings and Havoc hit the ice again tomorrow night at 7:30 p.m. on Breland Homes Ice in Huntsville in the final tune-up before the regular season begins for the RiverKings on October 26.

The RiverKings open their 2013-14 quest for the President's Cup at home on October 26 against the Louisiana IceGators. Group tickets start at $8 and are available by contacting the RiverKings front office at 662-342-1755.

About the Mississippi RiverKings
The Mississippi RiverKings are supported by their community partners, season ticket holders, fans, and by program-related investments of the Maddox Foundation, an independent private foundation based in Hernando, Miss. To find out more about the RiverKings, call 662-342-1755 or visit www.riverkings.com.
Posted by David Schmoll at 9:39 PM

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