Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report, Jan. 8

Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report, Jan. 8

Nailers Close out First Half with Pair of Home Wins; Ten of the Next 13 to be Played in the Friendly City

Last Week

Wed. 1/3 WHEELING NAILERS 2 @ Norfolk Admirals 3 (overtime)
Schulze (Josephs, Sorkin)
Bourbonnais (Beirnes, Milan)
Stevens- 27/30

Fri. 1/5 Manchester Monarchs 4 @ WHEELING NAILERS 7
Bourbonnais (Murray, Tolkinen)
Bourbonnais (Meurs, Rissling)
Francis (Rissling, Schulze)
Bourbonnais (Josephs)
Zink (Francis, Bourbonnais)
Sorkin (Brown, Francis)
Francis (Josephs, Zink)
Morrison- 33/37

Sat. 1/6 WHEELING NAILERS 2 @ Cincinnati Cyclones 4
Brown (Meurs)
Rissling (Schulze, Brown)
Stevens- 32/36 (L), King- 5/5

Sun. 1/7 Fort Wayne Komets 2 @ WHEELING NAILERS 4
Schulze (Meurs, Bourbonnais)
Francis (Bourbonnais, Rissling)
Brown (Sorkin, Francis)
McMullan (Milan, Fick)
Morrison- 39/41

Last week, the Wheeling Nailers opened the 2018 calendar year, while also reaching the midway mark of the 2017-18 regular season, as they went 2-1-1 in four games. On Wednesday night, Wheeling fell behind the Norfolk Admirals, 1-0, before Kevin Schulze and Riley Bourbonnais tallied in the opening minutes of the second period. The Admirals rallied from behind to win 3-2 in overtime, getting all three of their goals from Christian Horn, as well as a 44-save performance by Ty Reichenbach. On Friday night, the Nailers turned in a fantastic offensive performance against the North Division leading Manchester Monarchs, scoring six straight goals in a 7-4 triumph. Three of those markers belonged to Bourbonnais, while Chris Francis racked up two goals and two assists in his WesBanco Arena debut. Dylan Zink and Nick Sorkin were the other two players who lit the lamp. On Saturday night, Wheeling got goals from Cam Brown and Jaynen Rissling, but the Cincinnati Cyclones skated away victorious, 4-2. Finally, on Sunday afternoon, the Nailers fell behind 2-0 early, but put together a four-goal rally against former teammate Sean Maguire, as they defeated the Fort Wayne Komets, 4-2. Kevin Schulze, Francis, Brown, and Ross McMullan were the goal scorers, and Adam Morrison recorded his second victory of the weekend.

At the midway point of the regular season, the Nailers are 18-15-3, which is good for 39 points, and fourth place in the North Division. This is the ninth time in the last ten years that Wheeling has been .500 or better at the midway mark, and all nine of the previous seasons have resulted in a winning record at the end of the year. Offense continues to drive the ship for the Nailers in their victories, as they are 17-2-0 when scoring four or more goals in a game. Riley Bourbonnais netted his second career hat trick in Friday's win, accomplishing that feat in just 43 games. On Saturday, Wheeling played in front of the tenth largest crowd in ECHL history, as 14,025 fans packed their way into US Bank Arena. The Nailers scored 4-on-4 goals on Friday and Sunday, giving them five on the season. Sunday's win was the third of the year in which Wheeling erased a two-goal deficit. Chris Francis compiled six points in four games after being acquired in a trade, finishing tied for third in league scoring during the week, trailing teammate Riley Bourbonnais and Adirondack's Shane Conacher, who both had seven points.

This Week

Wed. 1/10 Adirondack Thunder @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05
Fri. 1/12 Norfolk Admirals @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05
Sat. 1/13 Norfolk Admirals @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05

This week, the Wheeling Nailers will get to spend the entire week at home, as they will take the ice on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, looking to build on their 10-6-1 record at WesBanco Arena. On Wednesday night, Wheeling will clash with the Adirondack Thunder for the first time since November 14th, when the Nailers earned a 6-4 victory on Education Day. Adirondack has earned points in each of its last five games (4-0-1) to move into sole possession of second place in the North Division. The Thunder are led offensively by a familiar name, as former Nailer Ty Loney has 17 goals and 31 points. On Friday and Saturday, Wheeling will complete its second season series of the year, when it plays back-to-back games against the Norfolk Admirals. The Nailers and Admirals have split the first four games of the season, with Wheeling winning 5-3 and 6-2, and Norfolk prevailing 4-1 and 3-2. The Admirals are 5-0-2 in their last seven games, which has pulled them within eight points of a playoff spot in the South Division. The Nailers will play 10 of their next 13 games on home ice.

Upcoming Home Games/Promotions
Wed. Jan. 10 & Wed. Jan. 24- WesBanco Winning Wednesday
Fri. Jan. 12 & Fri. Jan. 26- Frosty Friday
Sat. Jan. 13- Bricks & Kids Night, OYO Sports Figurine Giveaway (first 2,500 fans)
Sat. Jan. 27- Princesses & Pirates Night
Sun. Jan. 28- Faith & Family Day, Post Game Skate with the Team (even-numbered players)

Nailers Leaders
Goals: 16, Hunter Fejes
Assists: 26, Cam Brown
Points: 34, Cam Brown
Penalty Minutes: 92, Garrett Meurs
Plus/Minus: +7, Garrett Meurs & Dan Milan
Wins: 8, Sean Maguire
Goals Against Average: 3.04, Adam Morrison
Save Percentage: .910, Sean Maguire
Shutouts: 0

North Division Standings
1. Manchester Monarchs 21-12-2-1, 45 pts.
2. Adirondack Thunder 20-14-1-2, 43 pts.
3. Reading Royals 19-15-2-0, 40 pts.
4. WHEELING NAILERS 18-15-3-0, 39 pts.
5. Worcester Railers 14-14-3-2, 33 pts.
6. Brampton Beast 14-16-1-2, 31 pts.