Taylor Completes K-Wings Dramatic Comeback in Overtime
KALAMAZOO, MI - Trailing 3-1 in the third period, the Kalamazoo Wings (19-22-6-1) rallied to tie the game and Justin Taylor played the role of hero in overtime in a 4-3 comeback win over the Toledo Walleye (28-13-4-1) on Pink Ice Night in front of 4,740 fans Friday at Wings Event Center.
The K-Wings gave the hometown fans an early reason to cheer, when Eric Kattelus blasted a shot from the left point through a screen on Kalamazoo's first power play 5:26 into the game for his first of two goals. Toledo held a shots advantage of 13-8 through 20 minutes, but Jake Kielly stopped all 13 including several on the two Walleye power plays to keep the K-Wings in front 1-0.
Kielly stopped a second period breakaway attempt from Toledo's Alex Kromm, but the Gregor MacLeod stuffed home the rebound to tie the game at 1-1. The Walleye took their first lead on a power play, when T.J. Hensick ripped a shot into the net from the right circle less than two minutes after Toledo's first goal.
Hensick scored his second of the game during a 4-on-4 situation 3:20 into the third period to make it 3-1 for the Walleye. A little over two minutes later, rookie defenseman Josh Teves threw a shot into traffic that beat goaltender Billy Christopoulos to bring Kalamazoo back to within one. The K-Wings power play then went to work with just under nine minutes to play, as Kattelus lifted a backhander into the net during a goalmouth scramble to even the score at 3-3.
2:23 into overtime, Taylor raced into the Toledo zone on the left wing, passing the lone Walleye defenseman before sliding a backhander through Christopoulos' legs to complete the 4-3 comeback win. The goal was Taylor's third overtime winner of the season.
The K-Wings host the Brampton Beast Saturday on WMU/Esports Night at 7:00 p.m at Wings Event Center. Ticket packages, featuring an exclusive K-Wings/WMU hat are available at the Wings Event Center box office.
The Kalamazoo Wings are a professional hockey team located in southwest Michigan that has been a staple in the Kalamazoo, MI professional sports landscape since 1974. The K-Wings compete in the ECHL and are the AA affiliate of the National Hockey League's Vancouver Canucks. Kalamazoo plays their 36 regular season home games at Wings Event Center from October through April.
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