Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report
Sat. 3/7 WHEELING NAILERS 4 @ Indy Fuel 3
Army (Brace, Makowski)
J. Burton (Shea, Fournier)
Skelly (Shea, Fernandez)
Boak (Army, Torquato)
Sun. 3/8 WHEELING NAILERS 1 @ Evansville IceMen 2
Army (Torquato, Brace)
Tue. 3/10 WHEELING NAILERS 5 @ Evansville IceMen 2
Army (Torquato, Brace)
Gilbert (Torquato, Shea)
Torquato (Brace, Hartzell)
Gilbert (Johnson, J. Burton)
Fernandez (J. Burton)
Last week, the Wheeling Nailers played three straight games in the State of Indiana, and ended up bringing two wins and four points back home with them. On Saturday night, the Nailers couldn't wait to get started in a crucial contest against the Indy Fuel, as they exploded out of the gates with four goals in the first 20:42 of action. The comfortable 4-0 lead lasted for a bit, before the Fuel began to make a comeback with one goal in the second period and a pair of power play markers in the third. However, the home team was unable to get any closer, as Wheeling prevailed, 4-3. On Sunday, the strong start went the other way, as the Evansville IceMen jumped out a 2-0 lead in the opening stanza. The Nailers responded with a barrage of 34 shots during the second and third periods, but were only able to put one puck past Branden Komm, whose 40 saves lifted Evansville to the 2-1 victory. On Tuesday night, Wheeling got its revenge against the IceMen, despite falling behind 1-0 in the first. Derek Army, Zack Torquato, and David Gilbert (2) all scored during a four-goal second period, before Tyler Fernandez tacked on an insurance marker for a 5-2 final score. Eric Hartzell earned Tuesday's win with 38 saves, after Franky Palazzese split the first two tilts with a combined total of 57 stops.
The Nailers' wins in Indy and Evansville were their first in team history in those respective buildings. Wheeling has now won at least one game in every opposing venue it has visited in 2014-15 except Reading and Toledo. Tuesday night's triumph gave Clark Donatelli his 124th win as head coach of the Nailers, tying Doug Sauter's record for most wins as a Wheeling head coach. Derek Army scored at least one goal in all three games on the road trip, as he continues to lead the club with 23 tallies. Riley Brace is currently riding two season-high streaks, having recorded at least one assist in six straight games, while collecting at least one point in eight consecutive contests. The four-goal second period on Tuesday matched a season-high for goals in a single period, which has been achieved three other times. Sunday's 22-shot second period set a new season-high for shots on goal in a single frame. Wheeling is 3-1-0 in its last four road tilts, with all of the games taking place against North Division clubs.
Fri. 3/13 Kalamazoo Wings @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:35
Sat. 3/14 Elmira Jackals @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:35
Tue. 3/17 Toledo Walleye @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05
This week, the Wheeling Nailers will do nearly the opposite of what they did last night, as they will be at WesBanco Arena for two weekend games, followed by a Tuesday night tilt. On Friday night, a big North Division battle will take place, when the Nailers play their only home game of the season against the Kalamazoo Wings. Wheeling has won two of three games at Wings Stadium thus far, and will be looking to do damage at home against Kalamazoo, who currently holds the third of four spots for the postseason. On Saturday night, the Nailers will see a familiar face, as the Elmira Jackals make their way to WesBanco Arena once again. Wheeling has won all five of its home games against the Jackals this season, making for an overall record of 6-1-0. Similar to the Nailers, Elmira is currently fighting for its playoff life, trailing Greenville by four points for the final position in the East Division. On Tuesday night, the Nailers will tangle with the Toledo Walleye, whom they have beaten once in five tries, with that one triumph coming in the Ohio Valley. Toledo has all but secured its position in the playoffs, and is currently trying to track down Fort Wayne, who it trails by one point for first place in the North Division.
Upcoming Home Games/Promotions
Fri. 3/13 vs. Kalamazoo- Flat Screen Friday, Frosty Friday, Zack Torquato Poster Giveaway (2,000)
Sat. 3/14 vs. Elmira- Memorabilia Night with the Stanley Cup, Kelly Cup, and Three NHL Trophies, Pirate Parrot Appearance, Trading Card Set Giveaway, Post Game Autograph Session
Tue. 3/17 vs. Toledo- St. Patrick's Day, $5 Kids Tickets
Wed. 3/25 vs. Toledo- WesBanco Winning Wednesday, $5 Kids Tickets
Fri. 3/27 vs. Fort Wayne- Flat Screen Friday, Frosty Friday, Player Poster Giveaway (2,000)
Goals: 23, Derek Army
Assists: 39, Riley Brace
Points: 55, Riley Brace
Penalty Minutes: 163, Patrick McGrath
Plus/Minus: +16, Riley Brace
Wins: 15, Franky Palazzese
Goals Against Average: 2.71, Eric Hartzell
Save Percentage: .912, Eric Hartzell
Shutouts: 1, Eric Hartzell & Franky Palazzese
North Division Standings
1. Fort Wayne Komets 80 (vs. TOL, at CIN, vs. CIN)
2. Toledo Walleye 79 (at FW, vs. IND)
3. Kalamazoo Wings 61 (at WHL, at REA, at REA)
4. Cincinnati Cyclones 58 (vs. ORL, vs. FW, at FW)
5. WHEELING NAILERS 57 (vs. KAL, vs. ELM)
6. Indy Fuel 56 (vs. EVN, at TOL)
7. Evansville IceMen 36 (at IND, vs. ORL, vs. ORL)
The Nailers next homestand will take place from March 13th-17th.
Friday the 13th will be a 7:35 face-off in a key North Divsion tilt against the Kalamazoo Wings. One lucky fan will leave with a new TV on Flat Screen Friday, while 2,000 fans will get a free player poster. That night will also be a Frosty Friday.
On Saturday the 14th, the Stanley Cup comes to WesBanco Arena, as Wheeling faces Elmira at 7:35. Three other NHL trophies will be on display on Memorabilia Night, which will also feature a trading card set giveaway and post game autograph session. The Pittsburgh Pirate Parrot will be at the game as well.
Tuesday the 17th is a 7:05 clash with the Toledo Walleye on St. Patrick's Day. Kids tickets will be $5.
Wheeling Nailers 2015-16 season tickets, as well as flex tickets, group tickets and single-game tickets for 2014-15 are on sale now. For more information, call 304-234-GOAL or visit wheelingnailers.com.
Listen to all Nailers regular season and post-season games live on the Valley's rock station EAGLE 107.5 FM, on www.iheartradio.com or watch live on www.echl.tv. Catch every road game live on WLUTV on Comcast Cable 14.
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