Wings Clamp Down in 4-1 Win at Wheeling
WHEELING, WV - Two goals in the first 6:33 of the opening period was all the Kalamazoo Wings (7-11-2-0) needed in a defensively stout 4-1 win over the Wheeling Nailers (9-9-4-0) Saturday at WesBanco Arena.
Kalamazoo jumped out in front early for the second straight game, when Boston Leier fired a shot from the top of the right circle through a screen for a power play goal 3:15 into the game. The K-Wings made it 2-0 when Eric Kattelus set up Matt VanVoorhis for a one-timer just over three minutes later. The goal was VanVoorhis' first as a pro, and Kattelus picked up his second assist of the period.
Wheeling's first shot came with 20 seconds left in the opening frame, but Jake Kielly saw a few more chances in the middle frame. The rookie goaltender was up for the task, stopping seven shots for a two-period total of eight. Kalamazoo added a goal in the period to lead 3-0 after 40 minutes, when Ben Wilson deflected a centering pass into the net on a 3-on-1 rush.
The Nailers, celebrating their Teddy Bear Toss game, spoiled Kielly's shutout bid with 10:05 left in regulation on a shot from the point that Yushiroh Hirano tipped into the net to make it 3-1. After the teddy bears were cleared off the ice, Leier scored his second goal of the game, an empty-netter with 3:12 to play.
Kielly stopped 24 of 25, including 16 of 17 in the third period for his third win of the season.
Kalamazoo continues on its current five-game road trip next Wednesday with a 7:35 p.m. face-off against the Cincinnati Cyclones at Heritage Bank Center. Catch the action on ECHL TV and 1660 AM, The Fan.
Kalamazoo Wings 3-Packs are now available online! Reserve your tickets for the three biggest games in the best seats with the best eats. Visit kwings.com for more information about all the perks that come with a K-Wings 3-Pack!
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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