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K-Wings Weekly - Week 25

April 11, 2022 - ECHL (ECHL) - Kalamazoo Wings News Release


Kalamazoo prepares for a historic week with Tyler Willis' jersey retirement and looks to clinch a playoff berth.

OVERALL RECORD: 36-32-1-0

LAST WEEK: 2-2-0-0

KALAMAZOO, MI - The Kalamazoo Wings, proud ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League's Columbus Blue Jackets, welcome the Wheeling Nailers at home Wednesday, April 13, before playing a home-and-home series with the Toledo Walleye on Friday, April 15, and Saturday, April 16 to end the regular season.

The Central Division's participants for Kelly Cup Playoffs will be decided this week, and K-Wings legend Tyler Willis' No. 13 is going to be retired at Wings Event Center on Friday.

Last week, the K-Wings went 2-2-0-0 (5-2, 2-4, 4-5, 2-1).

After throttling Indy on Tuesday, Kalamazoo lost in Iowa on Friday and again at home to Fort Wayne in front of a sellout crowd for Grateful Dead Night on Saturday. Fortunately, the K-Wings regained their winning form versus the Komets on Sunday afternoon.

Coming into the final week, Kalamazoo's currently ranked No. 5 in the Central Division behind both No. 3 Wheeling and No. 4 Cincinnati.

The top four teams in the Central Division will be decided by Total Points, as each team will finish with 72 games played (*Covid impacted Divisions are decided by total winning percentage).

UPCOMING EVENTS IN DETAIL

Two of the three K-Wings games this week are at Wings Event Center.

Wednesday, April 13 versus Wheeling is '2-6-9 Night' and a one of a kind 'Winning Weekday' for the promotion's season finale at Wings Event Center. Come enjoy $2 beers and sodas, $6 wing baskets and a $9 ticket into the game. Plus, if the K-Wings win AND make the playoffs, you're going to the playoffs as well! Just return your ticket stub to the Box Office after the K-Wings clinch a postseason berth for a free ticket to the first Kalamazoo home playoff game (*Some restrictions apply).

Friday, April 15 versus Toledo is the last regular season home game and it's also 'Fan Appreciation & Jersey Retirement Night' at Wings Event Center. Be one of the first 1,000 fans and receive a mini Tyler Willis retirement banner replica and a team poster. Also, don't miss out on the in-game giveaways and the team's season awards immediately following the conclusion of the game. Looking for a steal of a deal to attend? Don't miss out on the Hungry Howie's 4-pack (4 Tickets, 4 K-Wings Winter Hats, 2 Team gifts of choice and a $20 Hungry Howie's voucher).

RESULTS

Tuesday, Apr. 5 - Indy 2, Kalamazoo 5 F (Wings Event Center - Kalamazoo, MI)|Box Score

>> Giovanni Valatti (4) opened up the scoring for the K-Wings just 41 seconds into the game with a booming slap shot from the blue line, and Jake Slaker netted a hat trick. Slaker's first goal came on the power play in the first. Justin Murray (20) fed Slaker a one timer in the right circle, which gave the K-Wings the 2-0 lead. Indy clawed back to tie it at the 5:51 mark of the third. A little over three minutes later, Tanner Sorenson (34) laid a thunderous hit in the corner to spring the puck towards the slot. Then Erik Bradford (28) tipped it to Slaker who buried the game-winner. Zach Jordan (13) scored Kalamazoo's insurance goal at the 17:46 mark of the third with an unassisted snipe from the right circle. Finally, Slaker scored the empty netter with an extra attacker on the ice for Indy. Trevor Gorsuch (22 saves) earned win No. 22 on the season

Friday, Apr. 8 - Kalamazoo 2, Iowa 4 (Xtream Arena - Coralville, IA) |Box Score

>> The K-Wings scored two goals in the game's first 10 minutes and held the lead until the 7:18 mark of the third. First, Justin Taylor (23) scored on a sweet backhand feed, turned right circle screen, from Anthony Collins (8). Max Humitz (10) set up the play with a neutral zone pass. Then Tyler Rockwell (3) climbed the right circle and scored just over four minutes later to make the score 2-0. Raymond Brice (7) and Justin Taylor (29) assisted on the goal. Iowa scored less than two minutes later to make it a one goal game. Kalamazoo took a 2-1 lead into the final frame, but Iowa's Ryan Kuffner scored a natural hat trick to complete the home team's comeback.

Saturday, Apr. 9 - Fort Wayne 5, Kalamazoo 4 (Wings Event Center - Kalamazoo, MI) |Box Score

>> The K-Wings took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission on the goal by Logan Lambdin (26) at the 5:54 mark. Fort Wayne added two goals between the 5:17 mark and the 7:53 mark of the second to take a 2-1 lead, but Lambdin (27) scored again to tie the game up at two at the 8:32 mark. Fort Wayne came back to take the lead just 31 seconds later. Olivier Leblanc (1) responded, tying it up at three with a minute and 12 seconds remaining in the second. Fort Wayne jumped out to a two goal lead in the third, and Jake Slaker (17) scored with the extra attacker to cut the Komets lead to one at the 19:46 mark. Jake Kielly (1-2-1-0) made 33 saves in the loss, and Justin Taylor set a new career high in assists on the Slaker goal.

Sunday, Apr. 10 - Fort Wayne 1, Kalamazoo 2 (Wings Event Center - Kalamazoo, MI) |Box Score

>> The game was a scoreless tie after one period, but Kalamazoo came out thumping in the second. The K-Wings finally opened the scoring at the 11:32 mark. Matheson Iacopelli (21) broke the scoreless tie with a second chance goal. Tanner Sorenson (35) took the initial shot, and Kyle Blaney (31) added the second assist. Kalamazoo outshot Fort Wayne 16-5 in the final frame to protect the one goal lead. Blaney (12) added the empty net goal at the 18:38 mark, putting the K-Wings up 2-0. Logan Lambdin (23) and Trevor Gorsuch (3) assisted on the goal. The Komets scored just 22 seconds later. But Kalamazoo slammed the door shut in the final minute. Gorsuch (23-22-0-0) was phenomenal, making 34 saves.

THE WEEK AHEAD

Wednesday, Apr. 13 - Wheeling versus Kalamazoo, 7:00 p.m. EDT - Wings Event Center (Kalamazoo, MI)

Friday, Apr. 15 - Toledo versus Kalamazoo, 7:00 p.m. EDT - Wings Event Center (Kalamazoo, MI)

Saturday, Apr. 16 - Kalamazoo at Toledo, 7:15 p.m. EDT - Huntington Center (Toledo, OH)

ON THE MOVE

4/6 - Forward Zach Jordan was recalled from his loan to Kalamazoo by Cleveland (AHL)

FAST FACTS

- Defenseman Olivier LeBlanc scored his first professional goal versus the Fort Wayne Komets on Saturday

- Forward Justin Taylor (30) set a new career high for single season assists, and tied Mike Messier (220) for No. 6 All-Time in K-Wings history for assists, versus Fort Wayne on Saturday

- Forward Kyle Blaney (12) tied a single-season career high for goals scored with his empty net game-winner versus Fort Wayne on Sunday

TEAM TRENDS

- 22-2-1 when leading after two periods

- 18-6-1 when leading after one period

- 17-8-1 in one goal games

STATISTICAL LEADERS

POINTS: 56 - Tanner Sorenson

GOAL: 27 - Logan Lambdin

ASSISTS: 36 - Tanner Sorenson

PLUS/MINUS: +13 - Erik Bradford

PIMS: 93 - Anthony Collins

PP GOALS: 10 - Justin Taylor

SH GOALS: 5 - Erik Bradford

GW GOALS: 5 - Matheson Iacopelli

SHOTS: 191 - Tanner Sorenson

WINS: 23- Trevor Gorsuch

GAA: 3.05 - Jet Greaves*

SAVE %: .907 - Jet Greaves*

* Currently with Cleveland (AHL)

** Currently with Columbus (NHL)

*** Currently with Iowa (AHL)

SPECIAL TEAMS

POWER PLAY: Last Week - 1/8 (12.5%)

This Season - 43/224 (19.2%) - No. 14 in the ECHL

PENALTY KILL: Last Week - 6/6 (100%)

This Season - 152/205 (74.1%) - No. 26 in the ECHL


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