KALAMAZOO, MI- The Wheeling Nailers finished the 2016-17 season with a 34-29-8 record, which was good for 76 points. Unfortunately, the year didn't conclude with one last victory, as the Kalamazoo Wings got the better of Wheeling, 5-2 at Wings Event Center. Kale Kerbashian and Tyler Currier tallied the last two goals of the year for the Nailers.
Each team picked up a goal in the first period, and the tallies came during the final six minutes of play. Kalamazoo got on the scoreboard first, connecting for a shorthanded goal. Peter Schneider sped down the right side, taking a shot from the circle, which was blockered away by Doug Carr. The rebound popped up into the air, before landing in the crease, where it was tapped in by Lane Scheidl. The Nailers rebounded with 17 seconds to go, knotting the score. Ross McMullan powered a one-timer on goal from the middle of the blueline, which was stopped, but the rebound was swept in on the backhand by Kale Kerbashian. Kevin Schulze also picked up an assist for his 60th point of the year.
The Wings retook the lead at the 8:06 mark of the middle frame. Cameron Darcy carried the puck deep from the right side of the ice and into the trapezoid. With his motion going one way, Darcy dropped a backhand pass into the crease, where it was poked home by Scheidl for his second tally of the contest and ninth of the season series. With just under a minute remaining, Kalamazoo extended its lead. Scott Henegar had his slap shot from the top of the right circle tipped, as Justin Taylor set himself up to slide in a shot from the left side of the cage.
Insurance was added in the early stages of the third period, as the Wings began to salt the game away. Tanner Sorenson fired in a shot from the right circle at the 41-second mark, and 1:09 later, Brian Hart deposited the rebound of Kyle Blaney's shot from the slot. The Nailers scored one more time before the season ended, as Garrett Meurs dropped a pass to Tyler Currier, who buzzed in a left circle wrist shot for his 20th tally of the campaign. The final score ended up 5-2 in favor of Kalamazoo.
Joel Martin had a busy night, earning the win for the Wings, blocking away 45 of the 47 shots he faced. Doug Carr played the final game of his career for Wheeling, ending up with 36 saves.
Stay tuned to wheelingnailers.com, the Nailers app, and social media networks for all of the latest information throughout the summer, as the team prepares for the 2017-18 season. To purchase season tickets, or to receive more information, call the Nailers at (304) 234-GOAL.