(6-2-2-0, 14 PTS, 3rd North, 7th East)
42 GF, 37 GA
PP: 32.7% (17-for-52), 1st
PK: 76.0% (38-for-50), 25th
24-F-Reid Gardiner (10 goals, 7 assists, 17 points in 10 games)
11-F-Cody Wydo (4 goals, 12 assists, 16 points in 10 games)
8-F-Nick Sorkin (3 goals, 10 assists, 13 points in 10 games)
21-F-Cam Brown (1 goal, 10 assists, 11 points in 10 games)
17-F-Kenny Ryan (7 goals, 3 assists, 10 points in 9 games)
26-D-Kevin Schulze (1 goal, 5 assists, 6 points in 10 games)
29-G-Will King (0-0-1 record, 2.41 GAA, .900 Sv% in 1 game)
(3-8-1-0, 7 PTS, 5th South, 11th East)
37 GF, 55 GA
PP: 14.5% (9-for-62), 19th
PK: 79.2% (42-for-53), T-20th
26-F-Angelo Miceli (4 goals, 9 assists, 13 points in 11 games)
12-F-Grant Besse (6 goals, 6 assists, 12 points in 12 games)
11-F-Brady Vail (4 goals, 5 assists, 9 points in 7 games)
7-F-Brody Dupont (3 goals, 6 assists, 9 points in 12 games)
9-F-Trevor Mingoia (5 goals, 2 assists, 7 points in 9 games)
4-D-Michael Young (1 goal, 4 assists, 5 points in 9 games)
1-G-Jamie Murray (1-2-1 record, 4.42 GAA, .896 Sv% in 4 games)
Head to Head
2016-17 Season Series: Nailers 1, Admirals 0
2016-17 Season Series at WesBanco Arena: Did Not Play
All-Time Series: Nailers 3, Admirals 3
All-Time Series at WesBanco Arena: Nailers 1, Admirals 1
Defending Home Ice
The Wheeling Nailers completed their first home-and-home series of the season on Saturday night, when they traveled to Huntington Center for a clash with the Toledo Walleye. Both teams defended their home arenas, as the Nailers earned a 4-3 victory on Friday, and the Walleye collected a 5-3 win on Saturday. Wheeling scored the lone goal in the first period, when Derek Army drilled in a one-timer from the left circle. Despite being outshot 16-11, the middle frame went to the Walleye, who netted three tallies in a span of 2:48. The Nailers battled back to even during the first five minutes of the third period, as Freddie Tiffels tapped in his first professional goal, and Cody Wydo lit the lamp for the second time in as many nights. Unfortunately, with 10:41 to go, Kyle Bonis put Toledo in the lead one last time, and Mike Borkowski added an empty netter to complete his hat trick for the 5-3 final. Pat Nagle made 36 saves for the Walleye, getting the better of Sean Maguire, who came up with 23 stops.
A Quick Weekend Trip to the North
The Norfolk Admirals will play their second game of the weekend, following a visit to Powerade Centre on Friday night, where they lost to the Brampton Beast, 4-2. After a scoreless opening stanza, the Beast opened up a 2-0 advantage with two goals in 18 seconds, chasing starting netminder Ty Reichenbach from the crease. Darik Angelli brought the Admirals to within a goal during the first minute of the final frame, but Brampton was too much, as it dented the twice two more times to go ahead, 4-1. Tommy Schutt tried to give Norfolk some late life with 4:57 left, but the mountain was too steep to climb, as the Beast preserved the win. Jamie Murray took the loss in relief, despite thwarting 23 of 25 Brampton attempts. Chris Driedger got the win in his season debut, making 28 saves.
New Teammates Fitting in Just Fine
Earlier in the week, the Nailers received three new players from the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, as forward Freddie Tiffels and defensemen Jeff Taylor and Dylan Zink were inserted into the lineup. Taylor made his season debut on Friday, and immediately made his way onto the scoresheet, notching his first professional point with an assist on Reid Gardiner's first marker of the night. The rookie out of Union College added another helper on Saturday, allowing a teammate to earn a milestone. That teammate was Tiffels, who joined Derek Army by crashing the net, then depositing the feed from Taylor for his first professional goal. Zink snagged his first professional point in his season debut with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on October 13th against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Rookie contributions have been strong early on for Wheeling, who has received 17 points from Gardiner and 11 from Cam Brown, who rank first and tied for fifth respectively in ECHL rookie scoring.
Bandaging the Blueline
One of the more alarming statistics for the Admirals struggles in the early part of the season is the amount of goals that they have surrendered. Norfolk's 55 goals against are the highest in the ECHL, as the Admirals and Brampton Beast are the only teams in the league who have given up 50 or more to the opposition. All three goaltenders have been victims of the opposing power, as Jake Paterson, Jamie Murray, and Ty Reichenbach all have goals against averages over 4.00 and save percentages under .900. Paterson is currently with the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals, leaving the crease duties to his two teammates. Recently, Norfolk has acquired three new defensemen to try to assist the masked men, bringing in Daniel Johnston from the Tulsa Oilers, Michael Young from the Rapid City Rush, and former Nailer Ryan Segalla, who was playing for the Adirondack Thunder. The Admirals 40.42 shots against per game is the second highest total in the ECHL.
A Week Like Old Times
Sunday afternoon marks the first of six head-to-head meetings between the Nailers and Admirals this season, as well as the first of three battles at WesBanco Arena. Three of the six games will be played over a seven-day span, as the Nailers will travel to Virginia on Friday and Saturday. Norfolk returned to the ECHL in 2015, following a 15-year run in the AHL. Prior to that, the team was known as the Hampton Roads Admirals, and that club clashed with the Nailers and Thunderbirds on 28 occasions. Last season, the two squads from neighboring states played only once, with Wheeling blowing Norfolk out of the water, 9-2 at Norfolk Scope. The Admirals last visited the Friendly city on March 13, 2016, when the Nailers won, 3-1. Following the three games in November, there set will conclude with three games in 11 days during January.