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Nailers at Royals Game Day Snap Shot, January 19

January 19, 2019 - ECHL (ECHL) - Wheeling Nailers News Release

Wheeling Nailers (19-18-2-0, 40 Pts.) at Reading Royals (17-13-3-5, 42 Pts.), 7:00 p.m.

WHEELING NAILERS

(19-18-2-0, 40 PTS, 5th Central, T-8th West)

135 GF, 125 GA

PP: 21.6% (37-for-171), 2nd

PK: 82.5% (151-for-183), 16th

NHL Affiliate: Pittsburgh Penguins

AHL Affiliate: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

27-F-Zac Lynch (11 goals, 28 assists, 39 points in 39 games)

4-F-Alex Rauter (9 goals, 19 assists, 28 points in 32 games)

10-F-Troy Josephs (17 goals, 10 assists, 27 points in 22 games)

9-F-Yushiroh Hirano (10 goals, 17 assists, 27 points in 34 games)

12-F-Renars Krastenbergs (11 goals, 12 assists, 23 points in 32 games)

23-F-Michael Phillips (9 goals, 14 assists, 23 points in 39 games)

31-G-Jordan Ruby (3-2-1 record, 2.65 GAA, .906 Sv% in 8 games)

READING ROYALS

(17-13-3-5, 42 PTS, 4th North, 7th East)

115 GF, 120 GA

PP: 17.4% (25-for-144), 14th

PK: 79.1% (106-for-134), 25th

NHL Affiliate: Philadelphia Flyers

AHL Affiliate: Lehigh Valley Phantoms

3-F-Chris McCarthy (9 goals, 26 assists, 35 points in 38 games)

86-F-Josh MacDonald (17 goals, 12 assists, 29 points in 38 games)

14-F-Adam Schmidt (11 goals, 16 assists, 27 points in 38 games)

21-F-Frank DiChiara (11 goals, 10 assists, 21 points in 37 games)

29-F-Jack Riley (5 goals, 11 assists, 16 points in 33 games)

25-D-Nick Luukko (4 goals, 10 assists, 14 points in 38 games)

33-G-Branden Komm (5-2-2 record, 2.53 GAA, .923 Sv% in 11 games)

Head-to-Head

Season Series: Nailers 2, Royals 2

Season Series at Santander Arena: Nailers 1, Royals 1

All-Time Series: Royals 98, Nailers 78

All-Time Series at Santander Arena: Royals 54, Nailers 35

Electric Power Plays in Glens Falls

The Wheeling Nailers scored four power play goals during their two-game road set against the Adirondack Thunder, but came up short on the scoreboard, as the Thunder were victorious, 5-3 and 6-2. On Friday night, Wheeling opened the scoring, when Troy Josephs deposited a feed from Alex Rauter, following a Zac Lynch point shot. James Henry got a piece of Desmond Bergin's shot to draw Adirondack even, before the power play took the stage in a big way. Matt Salhany tallied on the man advantage during the closing minutes of the first period, then John Edwardh and Brian Ward (2) struck during a five-minute power play in the middle frame, as the home team ultimately built a 6-1 advantage. Yushiroh Hirano netted the final marker of the night, as he tipped home Dan Fick's shot, putting him into double digits in the goal column. Alex Sakellaropoulos made 23 saves in the win, while John Muse stopped 14 of 20 shots, before giving way to Jordan Ruby, who was perfect on nine attempts.

Vallorani Plays Villain Role

The Reading Royals continued their unique home season, as a 3-1 loss to the Brampton Beast on Friday night dropped their record to 8-8-4 in the Keystone State. After a scoreless first period, Reading surrendered two goals in quick succession, as Matt Petgrave opened the scoring for the Beast, and he was followed 57 seconds later by former Royal David Vallorani. The home squad pulled back within a goal at the 5:44 mark of the third period, when Chris McCarthy dented the twine, giving him 35 points on the year. However, Vallorani put the finishing touches on his old club, potting an empty netter in the closing minutes. Etienne Marcoux turned away 29 of 30 shots in the win for Brampton, defeating Branden Komm, who made 33 saves on 35 shots in just his third appearance at any level since November 9th.

The Record Must Wait to be Broken

Dan Fick tied the record for most games played in Wheeling professional hockey history on Friday night, as he laced up the skates for the 231st time in a Nailers uniform. The tie is shared between Fick, Stefan Brannare, and Cliff Loya. Brannare was the first player to set the current mark, after passing Tim Roberts, who holds the Thunderbirds record with 215 games played. Stefan played in parts of six seasons between 1997-2006. Loya had two different stints in Wheeling, as he appeared in 138 games over two seasons from 2004-06, before returning to play in 93 contests from 2008-10. Seven players have played in at least 200 games, with three of the seven being achieved in the last five seasons (Fick, Paul Cianfrini, Zack Torquato). However, Dan will have to wait to break the record, as he was signed to a PTO by the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on Saturday.

Look to Lynch on Special Teams

Zac Lynch assisted on both goals in Friday night's tilt, as he has pulled into sole possession of first place on the team in assists (28) and points (39). Zac has done a tremendous amount of his damage on special teams, especially the man advantage, as he has been involved in the scoring on 17 of Wheeling's 37 power play goals this season. 16 of those points have come via assists, which places him tied for second in the ECHL. The former Robert Morris University Colonial collected his lone power play tally on November 30th in a 6-2 win over the Indy Fuel. In addition to his work on the man advantage, Lynch has also been a lethal force when the Nailers are shorthanded, as he leads the team with five shorthanded points, which also places him second in the league. Wheeling has scored at least one power play goal in 22 of 39 games, while being tied for second in the ECHL with 11 shorthanded markers.

Tied at the Midway Mark

Saturday night marks the fifth of eight head-to-head meetings between the Nailers and Royals this season, as well as the third of four battles at Santander Arena. Both teams have earned one win at home and one victory in enemy territory, with three of the four results being decided in one-sided fashion. The most recent tilt saw four different players light the lamp, while John Muse made 28 saves against his former squad in a 4-0 Wheeling triumph. Muse had started all four previous clashes in the set, but the Nailers are expected to turn to Jordan Ruby on Saturday. Troy Josephs has been the most productive player in the series, as he leads the way with four points for the Nailers, while Reading's active roster has four different players with three points each. The rivals are playing each other on back-to-back Saturdays, with the Royals traveling to WesBanco Arena for the next match on January 26th.


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