Nailers Guarantee Winning Home Record for 22nd Time in 25 Seasons With Two Victories
Wed. 2/15 Brampton Beast 3 @ WHEELING NAILERS 6
Wydo (Hilbrich, Currier)
Webster (Schulze, Hilbrich)
Fri. 2/17 Brampton Beast 6 @ WHEELING NAILERS 3
Kwas (Meurs, Sorkin)
Kwas (Meurs, Currier)
Maguire- 28/33 (1 en)
Sat. 2/18 Kalamazoo Wings 4 @ WHEELING NAILERS 5
Wydo (Sorkin, Meurs)
Sorkin (Kwas, Meurs)
Meurs (Currier, Kwas)
Schulze (Daniels, Sorkin)
Fick (Kwas, Lloyd)
Mon. 2/20 WHEELING NAILERS 2 @ Brampton Beast 3
Sorkin (Meurs, Schulze)
Last week, the Wheeling Nailers played four games over the course of six days, and posted a 2-2-0 record, with both of the victories coming at WesBanco Arena. The week began on Wednesday night with a blazing start against the Brampton Beast. Wheeling stormed out of the gates with a four-goal first period, as Cody Wydo lit the lamp twice, while Michael Webster and Kevin Schulze both found the back of the net from the blueline. Webster potted his second of the evening during the middle frame, and Wydo completed his hat trick in the third period for a 6-3 final score in favor of the Nailers. Sean Maguire made a career-high 40 saves. Wheeling also had a strong start on Friday night, as Jordan Kwas scored twice during the opening seven minutes of play for a 2-0 lead. However, Brampton responded with five consecutive goals to turn the contest completely around. Garrett Meurs temporarily closed the gap to two, before an empty netter iced the 6-3 result for the Beast. On Saturday night, the Kalamazoo Wings came to town for what turned out to be a back-and-forth affair. Wheeling never trailed, ultimately taking the lead five different times in a 5-4 victory. The goals came from Wydo, Nick Sorkin, Meurs, Schulze, and Danny Fick, while Doug Carr was the winning netminder. The stretch concluded on Monday afternoon in Brampton. Sorkin and Wydo dented the twine in the second period to put the Nailers ahead 2-1, but the Beast rallied with two strikes in the third period to prevail, 3-2.
Saturday night’s win was the 17th of the season on home ice for the Nailers, who guaranteed themselves a winning record at WesBanco Arena for the ninth year in a row and 22nd time in 25 seasons. Tyler Currier picked up at least one point in the games on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, which matched him with Nick Sorkin and Christian Hilbrich for the longest point streak of the season by a Wheeling player, at six straight games. Cody Wydo reached the 20-goal plateau on Saturday, and is currently the team leader with 21 tallies. He is the first Nailer since Chris Barton and Paul Crowder (2011-12, 2012-13) to score 20 or more goals in back-to-back seasons. Wheeling has had a particularly strong power play on home ice, converting on 25.8% of its opportunities, which ranks third in the ECHL. Sorkin leads the way with 20 power play points, while Wydo tops the club with nine power play goals. Mike Driscoll and Johnny Daniels both recorded their first points in a Nailers uniform, with assists on Wednesday and Saturday. Sean Maguire had a personal ten-game point streak on home ice come to an end on Friday, as he had gone 8-0-2.
Fri. 2/24 WHEELING NAILERS @ Toledo Walleye, 7:15
Sat. 2/25 WHEELING NAILERS @ Toledo Walleye, 7:15
Sun. 2/26 WHEELING NAILERS @ Fort Wayne Komets, 5:00
This week, the Wheeling Nailers will embark on the second leg of their seven-game road trip, as they will play three games in three days in two different cities. The weekend will begin with tilts on Friday and Saturday night at Huntington Center against the Toledo Walleye. The Walleye own the best record in the ECHL, as they have earned 75 points in 51 games. Despite those strong numbers, the Nailers have fared well against Toledo, winning four of the seven head-to-head contests. Home ice has played a big part in that success, as Wheeling is 3-1-0 at WesBanco Arena, while Toledo is 2-1-0 at Huntington Center. The last clash took place in West Virginia on January 25th, when the Nailers scored in the final minute of both regulation and overtime to take a thrilling 7-6 victory. The Walleye enter the week on a five-game point streak, having gone 4-0-1. On Sunday, Wheeling will make its second trip of the year to Allen County War Memorial Coliseum to do battle with the Fort Wayne Komets. The Nailers and Komets split a home-and-home series in the middle of December, with Wheeling winning the opener 6-5, and Fort Wayne responding the next night, 4-3. The Komets sit comfortably in second place in the Central Division, having accumulated 66 points in their first 51 games. They have a six-point lead over Quad City for home ice advantage in round one of the Kelly Cup Playoffs, while trailing Toledo by nine points for the division lead. That will be the first of three games in eight days between the two cross-conference foes.
Upcoming Home Games/Promotions
Fri. 3/10- Flat Screen Friday Presented by The Highlands, Frosty Friday
Sat. 3/11- Duck Dynasty Night Starring John Godwin & Justin Martin, Camouflage Hat Giveaway (First 2,500 Fans), St. Baldrick’s Night
Sun. 3/12- Youth Hockey Day, Family Funday, McDonald’s $6 Kids Tickets, Post Game Skate With the Team
Wed. 3/22- WesBanco Winning Wednesday, McDonald’s $6 Kids Tickets
Fri. 3/24- Mascot Night, Flat Screen Friday Presented by The Highlands, Frosty Friday
Goals: 21, Cody Wydo
Assists: 35, Kevin Schulze
Points: 44, Kevin Schulze
Penalty Minutes: 90, Garrett Meurs
Plus/Minus: +22, Christian Hilbrich
Wins: 13, Doug Carr
Goals Against Average: 2.88, Sean Maguire
Save Percentage: .906, Sean Maguire
Shutouts: 2, Sean Maguire
North Division Standings
1. Manchester Monarchs 29-14-5-4, 67 pts.
2. Reading Royals 31-17-1-2, 65 pts.
3. Brampton Beast 29-16-3-3, 64 pts.
4. Adirondack Thunder 27-14-6-4, 64 pts.
5. WHEELING NAILERS 27-19-5-0, 59 pts.
6. Elmira Jackals 9-35-6-1, 25 pts.