Nailers Announce 2018 Training Camp Roster & Schedule
WHEELING, WV - The Wheeling Nailers, proud ECHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins, have announced their 2018 training camp roster. The roster consists of 29 players - 19 forwards, six defensemen, and four goaltenders.
The 2018 edition of Wheeling Nailers Training Camp has a very new feel to it, as only five of the 29 players have worn a Wheeling uniform in a previous season. Six of the remaining 24 have ECHL experience with other organizations, while ten others have played professionally in either the Southern Professional Hockey League, the Federal Hockey League, or in Europe.
The five familiar faces for Nailers fans are forward Andrew Schmit, defensemen Danny Fick and Ayrton Valente, and goaltenders Matt O'Connor and Danny Tirone. Fick is the player who has spent the most time in Wheeling, as he enters his fourth season with the organization, having amassed 45 points in 192 games during the previous three. Schmit was acquired by the Nailers last season in a four-player trade with the Indy Fuel, and went on to collect three assists in ten games. Valente came to Wheeling after completing his collegiate career at SUNY-Plattsburgh, and proceeded to record one goal and three assists in 11 contests. O'Connor and Tirone combined to appear in six games with the Nailers during the final two months of the regular season.
Leading the charge in the group of newcomers to Wheeling are forwards Zac Lynch and Nick Saracino. A Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native, Lynch is coming off a 22-goal, 46-point season with the Manchester Monarchs, as he prepares to begin his third pro campaign. Saracino is also entering his third year as a pro, following a 12-goal, 37-point season with the Worcester Railers. Forward Christian Isackson played in the ECHL for two seasons with the Wichita Thunder, and is ready to return to North America, after playing for Gap HC in France and the EIHL's Milton Keynes Lightning. Forward Alex Rauter and defenseman Aaron Titcomb both got their introductions to the professional level in the spring, after completing their college careers. Rauter posted three points in three games with the Atlanta Gladiators, while Titcomb accumulated a pair of assists in two tilts with the Adirondack Thunder. Finally, goaltender Evan Cowley turned in a 14-14-1 record as a rookie last season with the Manchester Monarchs and AHL's Springfield Thunderbirds.
Nine players attended training camp with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins last week, and are expected to arrive in Wheeling in the coming days. Joining the aforementioned Fick, Lynch, O'Connor, Saracino, and Tirone were rookie forwards Tyler Bird, Yushiroh Hirano, and Cedric Lacroix, in addition to defenseman Craig Skudalski.
All Wheeling Nailers Training Camp practices are open to the public, who are asked to remain in the seating bowl while the team is on the ice. Practices on Tuesday, October 2nd, Wednesday, October 3rd, and Thursday October 4th will be held at 11:00 a.m. Morning skates on Friday, October 5th and Saturday, October 6th will both start at 10:15 a.m.
The Wheeling Nailers will play two preseason games this weekend against the Cincinnati Cyclones. The first game is at WesBanco Arena on Friday at 7:05, before the teams travel to U.S. Bank Arena for Saturday's rematch at 7:35. The regular season opens on October 13th, when the Nailers visit the Norfolk Admirals. Wheeling's first home game will take place on November 3rd against the Indy Fuel. The Wheeling Nailers, considered one of the top things to do in Wheeling, West Virginia, provide affordable family entertainment for fans throughout the Ohio Valley. For information on season tickets, group tickets, flex plans, and more, call (304) 234-GOAL.
2018 Wheeling Nailers Training Camp Roster
F Caleb Apperson
F Tyler Bird
F Ray Boudiette
D Josh Couturier
G Evan Cowley
D Brien Diffley
F Mike Fazio
F Nathan Ferriero
D Danny Fick
F Eliot Grauer
F Yushiroh Hirano
F Christian Isackson
F Kasey Kulczycki
F Cedric Lacroix
F Zac Lynch
F Tommy Mahoney
G Joseph Murdaca
G Matt O'Connor
F Mark Petaccio
F Michael Phillips
F Alex Rauter
F Nick Saracino
F Ross Scherma
F Andrew Schmit
F Bryan Sienerth
D Craig Skudalski
G Danny Tirone
D Aaron Titcomb
D Ayrton Valente
2018 Wheeling Nailers Training Camp Schedule
Tuesday, October 2nd 11:00 AM Practice
Wednesday, October 3rd 11:00 AM Practice
Thursday, October 4th 11:00 AM Practice
Friday, October 5th 10:15 AM Morning Skate
7:05 PM Preseason Game vs. Cincinnati
Saturday, October 6th 10:15 AM Morning Skate
7:35 PM Preseason Game at Cincinnati
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