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Nailers at Komets Game Day Snap Shot

Sunday, February 26th
Nailers at Komets Game Day Snap Shot

WHEELING NAILERS(27-20-6-0, 60 PTS, 5th North, T-9th East)181 GF, 169 GAPP: 20.4% (51-for-250), 8thPK: 75.6% (167-for-221), 27th

26-D-Kevin Schulze (9 goals, 36 assists, 45 points in 49 games)8-F-Nick Sorkin (13 goals, 30 assists, 43 points in 41 games)17-F-Jordan Kwas (19 goals, 21 assists, 40 points in 49 games)11-F-Cody Wydo (22 goals, 17 assists, 39 points in 52 games)23-F-Garrett Meurs (19 goals, 20 assists, 39 points in 52 games)14-F-Tyler Currier (11 goals, 22 assists, 33 points in 54 games)29-G-Sean Maguire (10-9-3 record, 3.07 GAA, .899 Sv% in 23 games)

FORT WAYNE KOMETS(32-15-5-2, 71 PTS, 2nd Central, 4th West)201 GF, 162 GAPP: 21.4% (43-for-201), 7thPK: 83.1% (206-for-248), 12th

19-F-Shawn Szydlowski (22 goals, 31 assists, 53 points in 34 games)22-F-Jamie Schaafsma (13 goals, 36 assists, 49 points in 40 games)25-F-Travis Ewanyk (17 goals, 24 assists, 41 points in 56 games)15-F-Mike Embach (14 goals, 25 assists, 39 points in 46 games)48-F-Garrett Thompson (16 goals, 22 assists, 38 points in 48 games)4-D-Jason Binkley (7 goals, 24 assists, 31 points in 50 games)31-G-Pat Nagle (6-0-3 record, 2.36 GAA, .912 Sv% in 11 games)

Head to HeadSeason Series: Nailers 1, Komets 1Season Series at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum: Komets 1, Nailers 0All-Time Series: Nailers 8, Komets 5All-Time Series at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum: Nailers 4, Komets 3

A Response That Deserved BetterThe Wheeling Nailers responded well on Saturday night, as they played the second of back-to-back games against the Toledo Walleye at Huntington Center. For the second game in a row, the Nailers fell behind early, but this time, they battled back to even the score, as Adam Krause slammed in a cross-crease pass from Gage Quinney. Toledo regained the lead during the final minute of the first period, before Wheeling lit the lamp twice in a span of 3:38 to pull ahead for the first time. Cody Wydo got the equalizer, shoving in a loose puck on the left side of the net. Then, the go-ahead goal came from Johnny Daniels, who jammed in his first ECHL goal on the right side of the crease. A second power play goal tied things up for the Walleye, but neither team was able to find the back of the net in the third period, leading to overtime. Wydo appeared to have won it for the Nailers, but the goal was disallowed, and moments later, Beau Schmitz capitalized, giving the 4-3 win to Toledo.

No Noise From the ThunderThe Fort Wayne Komets had what appeared to be an easy night on Saturday, as they throttled the Wichita Thunder, 6-0 at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. The blowout started early, as Fort Wayne found the back of the net three times during the opening stanza. First up was Shawn Szydlowski, who put home his 22nd goal of the season at the 3:58 mark. Then, Garrett Thompson and Trevor Cheek scored 1:18 apart from each other, extending the early advantage. The lead got upped to five in the first half of the second period. Cody Sol gave Fort Wayne its lone tally from the blueline at 2:07, and 5:41 after that, Cheek potted his second of the night, spelling the end of the game for Wichita starter Scott Greenham. Drew Owsley surrendered one goal in relief, and it was Cheek's hat trick marker at 8:08 of the third. Garrett Bartus made 28 saves to earn the shutout.

Let's Settle it in SixtyWhen the final buzzer sounds to end the third period of play, neither the Nailers nor the Komets have been all that excited by what has followed in the case of a tied score. Saturday night was the eighth game involving Wheeling that went past regulation, and for the sixth time this season, the Nailers came out on the short end, as Beau Schmitz snapped a 3-3 tie with less than ten seconds remaining in overtime. The Nailers are 1-6 in the five-minute period, with their lone victory coming on January 25th at WesBanco Arena against Toledo. Fort Wayne is 3-5 during the five-minute period, but won its last contest with that scenario, as it edged Brampton, 4-3 last Saturday. Shootouts have been incredibly rare for both teams in 2016-17. Wheeling hasn't had a game reach that point since all the way back on October 28th, when it defeated Kalamazoo, 3-2. Meanwhile, the Komets were the final ECHL team to appear in a shootout, as they didn't go to their first one until last Sunday in Cincinnati. Fort Wayne went to back-to-back shootouts, and lost both.

He Earned His SpotAt the start of the 2016-17 campaign, the goaltending tandem for the Komets was Pat Nagle and Eric Hartzell. Nagle was Fort Wayne's number one backstop in 2015-16, as he won 28 games, while Hartzell, a former Nailer, returned from North America after spending most of one year in Europe. Early in the season, Nagle got hurt, and Hartzell struggled, meaning the Komets were looking for a new body to fill the crease. The call went to Garrett Bartus, who posted a 6-1-1 record with the SPHL's Macon Mayhem. Bartus turned out to be exactly what the doctor ordered, and on Saturday night, he backstopped his third shutout of the season, denying all 28 Wichita shots sent his way. Garrett has earned a 17-6-0 record with Fort Wayne, in addition to recording a 2.46 goals against average, and a .911 save percentage. Nagle is 6-0-3 in 11 appearances. Both active Wheeling netminders have winning records thus far this season, as Doug Carr is 13-10-2, while Sean Maguire is 10-9-3.

We'll See You This Week and NextSunday afternoon marks the third of five head-to-head meetings between the Nailers and Komets this season, as well as the second of four battles at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. Wheeling and Fort Wayne haven't seen each other since the middle of December, when the two sides split a home-and-home series, with each triumph going to the home squad. The first game of the set was one of the greatest comebacks of the year for the Nailers, who rallied back from a 4-0 deficit, scoring six of the game's final seven goals for a thrilling 6-5 victory. Included in the comeback was a hat trick by Adam Krause, which included the tying and winning tallies. The following night, the Komets flew out to a 3-0 lead, before holding on for the 4-3 win in Indiana. Kyle Thomas netted two goals, including the game winner. Wheeling is starting a stretch of four straight games in the Hoosier State, as it will travel to Indy on Friday, before returning to Fort Wayne to close out the season series next Saturday and Sunday.

Upcoming Home Games

Full Schedule
Faith & Family Night
Sunday, March 3rd
Faith & Family Night
Puck Drops:
4:10 PM EST
WesBanco Arena
Cincinnati Cyclones
CIN Cincinnati Cyclones
at
Wheeling Nailers
WHL Wheeling Nailers
WesBanco Arena
Education Day
Tuesday, March 19th
Education Day
Puck Drops:
10:45 AM EDT
WesBanco Arena
Indy Fuel
IND Indy Fuel
at
Wheeling Nailers
WHL Wheeling Nailers
WesBanco Arena
Frosty Friday
Friday, March 22nd
Frosty Friday
Puck Drops:
7:10 PM EDT
WesBanco Arena
Kalamazoo Wings
KAL Kalamazoo Wings
at
Wheeling Nailers
WHL Wheeling Nailers
WesBanco Arena

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