Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report, Nov. 6

Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report, Nov. 6

Nailers Take Three out of Four Points, Leading into Two Battles Between First Place Teams

Last Week

Fri. 11/3 Cincinnati Cyclones 4 @ WHEELING NAILERS 3 (overtime)
Ryan (Brown, Wydo)
Army (Brown, Gardiner)
Gardiner (Wydo, Sorkin)
Maguire- 4/6, King- 18/20 (OTL)

Sat. 11/4 WHEELING NAILERS 5 @ Indy Fuel 1
Schulze (Wydo, Gardiner)
Gardiner (Meurs, Tolkinen)
Sorkin (Wydo)
Ryan (Sorkin, Wydo)
Gardiner (unassisted)
Maguire- 41/42

Last week, the Wheeling Nailers earned at least one point in both of their games, as they remained tied for first place in the North Division with a 5-1-2 record, good for 12 points. On Friday night, Wheeling rallied from three separate deficits against the Cincinnati Cyclones. Former Cyclone Kenny Ryan scored his second goal of the year against his former team in the first period, and was followed by Derek Army in the middle frame, then Reid Gardiner with under three minutes left in regulation. Unfortunately, the Nailers were unable to secure a second point, as Cincinnati prevailed in overtime. Will King made 18 saves on 20 shots in his ECHL debut, taking over during the opening stanza. On Saturday night, Wheeling was in control from start to finish, as the Indy Fuel got pumped at Indiana Farmers Coliseum. Kevin Schulze and Gardiner stoked the visitors to a 2-0 lead in the first period, before Nick Sorkin, Ryan, and Gardiner upped the advantage to 5-0 in the opening three minutes of period two. Indy spoiled the shutout moments later, but that was the only tally against Sean Maguire, who tossed aside 41 of the 42 shots he faced in the 5-1 triumph.

Wheeling's 5-1-2 start is one point off of the pace for the best eight-game start in team history. The 2008-09 team had 13 points in eight games. The power play continues to be red hot for the Nailers, as they went 2-for-3 in both games, bringing their season success rate to 38.5%, which is 10.2% higher than the next highest team in the ECHL. Wheeling also mixed in a shorthanded goal on Saturday - the first of the year, to go along with a perfect 8-for-8 performance on the penalty kill. After the Nailers scored their fifth goal in Saturday's win, the Fuel lifted their starting goaltender. That was the fourth time in eight games this season in which Wheeling has faced both opposing netminders in the same contest. Second periods have been lethal in the last four games for the Nailers, as they have outscored the opposition 10-2 during that frame. Reid Gardiner won ECHL Rookie of the Month in October, and he picked up right where he left off, as the calendar switched over to November. Gardiner recorded five points in the two games over the weekend, extending his goal streak to six straight games, while picking up at least one point in all eight tilts this season. Reid is also the team leader with three game winning goals. Other notable active streaks are five-game point streaks by Nick Sorkin and Cody Wydo, as well as a four-game goal streak by Kenny Ryan.

This Week

Fri. 11/10 Toledo Walleye @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05
Sat. 11/11 WHEELING NAILERS @ Toledo Walleye, 7:15
Sun. 11/12 Norfolk Admirals @ WHEELING NAILERS, 3:05

This week, the Wheeling Nailers will play their first set of three games in three days during the 2017-18 campaign. The weekend begins with a pair of battles between two teams at the top of their respective divisions, as the Nailers play a home-and-home series against the Toledo Walleye. Toledo took home the league's best record last season, but Wheeling held its own, going 4-5-1 in head-to-head competition, including a 3-2-0 mark at WesBanco Arena. The Walleye found a valuable asset from that Nailers squad, as Christian Hilbrich is Toledo's leading scorer thus far this season, having accumulated four goals and nine points in nine games. Like Wheeling, the Walleye haven't seen much of their home ice in the early part of the year, as both clubs will play their third home games over the weekend. There are seven meetings on tap between the two regional rivals this year. On Sunday, the Nailers will host the Norfolk Admirals, who will make their first trip to Wheeling since March 13, 2016. Wheeling throttled Norfolk, 9-2 in the lone clash last season at Norfolk Scope Arena. The Admirals won two of their first three games, before suffering six straight losses, and are currently 3-7-0 through the first ten games. Wheeling and Norfolk will collide three times in seven days in November, then three times in 11 days in January.

Upcoming Home Games/Promotions
Fri. 11/10- Marvel Super Hero Night, Children's Cape Giveaway (first 1,000 kids), Frosty Friday
Sun. 11/12- Post Game Skate with the Team
Tue. 11/14- Education Day #1, Thundersticks Giveaway (all)
Wed. 11/22- Animal House Night, Glass Beer Stein Giveaway (first 1,500 adults), WesBanco Winning Wednesday
Sat. 11/25- Teddy Bear Toss Night

Nailers Leaders
Goals: 8, Reid Gardiner
Assists: 11, Cody Wydo
Points: 13, Reid Gardiner & Cody Wydo
Penalty Minutes: 34, Garrett Meurs
Plus/Minus: +6, Dan Milan
Wins: 3, Sean Maguire
Goals Against Average: 3.27, Colin Stevens
Save Percentage: .907, Sean Maguire & Colin Stevens
Shutouts: 0

North Division Standings
1. WHEELING NAILERS 5-1-2-0, 12 pts.
2. Manchester Monarchs 5-3-1-1, 12 pts.
3. Worcester Railers 5-3-1-0, 11 pts.
4. Reading Royals 5-2-0-0, 10 pts.
5. Adirondack Thunder 4-4-1-0, 9 pts.
6. Brampton Beast 2-6-1-1, 6 pts.