(31-25-7-0, 69 PTS, 5th North, T-9th East)
214 GF, 205 GA
PP: 20.4% (60-for-294), 8th
PK: 75.7% (187-for-247), 27th
26-D-Kevin Schulze (11 goals, 42 assists, 53 points in 59 games)
11-F-Cody Wydo (28 goals, 23 assists, 51 points in 62 games)
8-F-Nick Sorkin (13 goals, 35 assists, 48 points in 50 games)
23-F-Garrett Meurs (21 goals, 24 assists, 45 points in 62 games)
17-F-Jordan Kwas (20 goals, 24 assists, 44 points in 58 games)
14-F-Tyler Currier (16 goals, 26 assists, 42 points in 64 games)
31-G-Doug Carr (16-11-2 record, 3.39 GAA, .887 Sv% in 31 games)
(14-41-7-1, 36 PTS, 6th North, 13th East)
146 GF, 241 GA
PP: 15.9% (33-for-207), 16th
PK: 80.7% (196-for-243), 22nd
10-F-Sebastien Sylvestre (18 goals, 26 assists, 44 points in 58 games)
11-F-Sam Povorozniouk (17 goals, 21 assists, 38 points in 53 games)
20-F-Kenton Miller (25 goals, 11 assists, 36 points in 62 games)
55-D-Davis Vandane (7 goals, 21 assists, 28 points in 59 games)
15-F-Nathan Moon (9 goals, 17 assists, 26 points in 50 games)
44-F-Casey Thrush (6 goals, 17 assists, 23 points in 51 games)
31-G-Jason Kasdorf (4-17-1 record, 4.16 GAA, .876 Sv% in 25 games)
Head to Head
Season Series: Nailers 2, Jackals 0
Season Series at First Arena: Nailers 1, Jackals 0
All-Time Series: Nailers 47, Jackals 46
All-Time Series at First Arena: Jackals 28, Nailers 20
Three out of Four in Glens Falls
The Wheeling Nailers picked up three out of four possible points in their two-game series against the Adirondack Thunder at Glens Falls Civic Center, as they won the opening game 5-2, before falling 5-4 in overtime on Saturday. Wheeling took a 2-0 lead in the first period for the second night in a row, as Tyler Currier banged home a one-timer from the right side of the slot, and Mike Krieg scored his first goal as a Nailer with a slap shot from the blueline. Kevin Schulze added to the advantage in the middle frame, tacking on the club's second power play marker. The third period got turned around completely, as the Thunder rallied back with four consecutive strikes, pulling ahead 4-3. Christian Hilbrich guaranteed a point for Wheeling with his tying goal at 19:40 of the stanza. Unfortunately, a second point was not in the cards, as Alex Wall netted the winning goal for Adirondack. Both goaltenders were incredibly busy, as JP Anderson made 44 saves for the Thunder, while Sean Maguire stopped 38 shots for the Nailers.
Not Mad to See Them Leave Town
The Elmira Jackals will be excited to know that the remainder of their 2016-17 schedule does not feature any more games against the Brampton Beast. On Saturday night, the Beast visited First Arena, and completed a perfect 9-0-0 season series against the Jackals, closing it out in decisive fashion. Brampton opened up the scoring with a pair of goals during the final three minutes of the first period, as Brandon Marino and Luke Pither both found the back of the net. Pither added his second of the evening at the 6:39 mark of the middle frame, extending the lead to 3-0. Kenton Miller put Elmira on the scoreboard for the first time with under a minute to go in period two, but the Beast added three insurance goals from Connor Crisp, Willie Corrin, and Jordan Henry to salt the tilt away. Mark Bennett had the other marker for the Jackals, who fell 6-2. Zachary Fucale defeated Jason Kasdorf in the goaltending battle.
It wasn't Over Until it was Over
Both teams had leads during regulation in Adirondack's 5-4 overtime triumph against Wheeling, which came with plenty of unique twists and turns. The Nailers flew out to a 3-0 lead, thanks to a pair of power play goals. Those were the only two special teams markers in the contest, which is typically good news for Wheeling. However, a big five-minute penalty kill in the third period by the Thunder kept the door open for the comeback in what turned out to be just the fifth time all season that the Nailers won the special teams battle, but not the game. The 2015-16 version of the Nailers made a habit having some memorable comebacks, and while the 2016-17 squad has had its share, comebacks have been incredibly frequent occurrences. In fact, the team that has won has trailed at one point in 31 of 63 (49.2%) of games involving Wheeling. 13 of the comebacks belong to the Nailers, while 18 have gone to the opposition. Both sides led at one point during regulation on Saturday. That game was also the 12th time this season that a team has been victorious when trailing by at least two. The largest comeback took place on December 16th, when Wheeling rallied from a 4-0 hole to stun the Fort Wayne Komets.
Two Milestones in One Day
First Arena will say goodbye to ECHL hockey when the 2016-17 season comes to an end in three weeks, meaning that Sunday is the final visit to that building for the Nailers. The Jackals first brought professional hockey to Elmira in 2000, and were members of the United Hockey League until 2007, when the team switched over to the ECHL. The team has spent the last ten seasons in the ECHL, and will finish with a winning record, as it reached the Kelly Cup Playoffs in each of its first six campaigns. Elmira's best season took place in 2011-12, when former Nailers head coach Pat Bingham led it to a 41-win, 95-point season, and an appearance in the second round. Sunday's finale will be extra special for one of Bingham's former colleagues, Bill Higgins, who will work his 1,000th regular season game as Wheeling's equipment manager. Higgins has had the opportunity to work as the team's equipment manager in his home town of Wheeling for 14 seasons, after growing up an avid fan of both the Thunderbirds and Nailers.
One More for History
Sunday afternoon marks the third of three head-to-head meetings between the Nailers and Jackals this season, as well as the second of two battles at First Arena. Wheeling has won both of the matches played thus far this year, scoring five goals in each clash, while earning a pair of comeback victories. On Wednesday night, the Nailers rallied from 2-1 and 3-2 deficits, getting a hat trick from Gage Quinney to stun the Jackals, 5-4 on their home ice. Quinney is the leading scorer in the season series, as he has collected three points in each of the two games played. With this serving as the last ever game between the two North Division rivals, Wheeling has an opportunity to secure the win in the all-time series, if it can come out on top. The Nailers have a slim 47-46 edge in the first 93 contests, with 27 home wins and 20 road triumphs. The last time Wheeling closed out an all-time series was last season against Evansville, and it did so with a victory. The Nailers also won their last ever visit to Ford Center the year before. Wheeling is in search of the first ever sweep in this particular all-time series.