Last WeekTuesday, November 27th: WHEELING NAILERS 4 @ Kalamazoo Wings 6The Wheeling Nailers continued their stretch of eight straight games against divisional opponents last week, beginning with their first trip of the season to Wings Event Center to clash with the Kalamazoo Wings. Wheeling fell behind 3-0 quickly, but battled back to within a goal, thanks to a pair of markers by Renars Krastenbergs. Winston Day Chief also had a strong game offensively, as he turned on the red light twice, but unfortunately, those goals weren't enough, as the Wings scored one more goal in the middle frame, then twice in the third for a 6-4 victory on home ice. The Nailers set a season-high with 51 shots on goal against Belarus native Ivan Kulbakov in the crease for Kalamazoo.
Friday, November 30th: Indy Fuel 2 @ WHEELING NAILERS 6Friday night's tilt at WesBanco Arena was Wheeling's best offensive performance of the home season, as the legendary goal horn was sounded six times in the team's 6-2 triumph over the Indy Fuel. Krastenbergs had another solid performance with one goal and two assists, while Kevin Spinozzi earned first star honors with two goals and one assist. Nick Saracino, Zac Lynch, and Mike Fazio all found the back of the net once each in support of Danny Tirone, who made 24 saves to earn his the first win of his professional career.
Saturday, December 1st: Kalamazoo Wings 2 @ WHEELING NAILERS 0The two games last week against Kalamazoo were polar opposites of each other, as Tuesday's ten-goal offensive slugfest was swapped out for a defensive battle on Saturday night. Wings goaltender Jake Hildebrand had his best game of the season, turning away all 30 Wheeling shots for his fifth career shutout. Kalamazoo capitalized on a pair of power plays, as Justin Taylor broke the scoreless deadlock in the second period, while former Nailer Reid Gardiner added insurance early in the final frame. Tirone made 27 saves in his second straight start.
This WeekFriday, December 7th: Fort Wayne Komets @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05 p.m.Once Friday night's game is complete, the Nailers will have played each of their Central Division opponents at least once this season, as they welcome the Fort Wayne Komets to WesBanco Arena. After winning just one of their first six games to start the year, the Komets have posted a 9-4 record in their last 13 tilts, climbing up to third place in the group. One of Fort Wayne's major contributors offensively has been former Nailer J.C. Campagna, who leads the squad with 11 goals. Last season, the Komets took four of six meetings against Wheeling, including three of four in Nail City.
Saturday, December 8th: WHEELING NAILERS @ Toledo Walleye, 7:15 p.m.On Saturday night, the Nailers will make their first venture of the season to Huntington Center, where they will meet up with the Toledo Walleye. Toledo escaped with a pair of one-goal victories at WesBanco Arena in November, winning 2-1 and 4-3, as it continues to lead the Central Division with a 14-2-2 record, which is good for 30 points. Part of that mark is a 6-0-0 home record, as the Walleye have had single-digit home losses in four straight seasons. Wheeling has earned road wins in Toledo each of the last two years, with the most recent victory coming nearly a year ago to the date on December 9, 2017.
Sunday, December 9th: Indy Fuel @ WHEELING NAILERS, 3:05 p.m.Nine days after their last contest, the Nailers and Indy Fuel will do battle again at WesBanco Arena on Sunday afternoon, as both clubs finish stretches of three games in three days. The first two games of the season set have produced one win for each side, with the Fuel winning 5-3 in Wheeling's home opener, and the Nailers exacting their revenge, 6-2 last Friday. Last weekend, Indy suffered back-to-back losses for the second time this season, falling one game under .500 for the first time since starting the year 0-1-0. The Fuel leading Wheeling and Kalamazoo by three points for fourth place in the Central Division, while having played one more game.
Notes- The Nailers had three different players with multi-goal games last week (Krastenbergs, Day Chief, Spinozzi), after two players (Josephs 3X, Grauer) had multi-goal games during the first 15 games of the season.- Each of Wheeling's last three wins have come via comebacks.- Renars Krastenbergs led the Nailers with five points in two games last week.- Kevin Spinozzi became the first Nailer this season with multiple game winning goals, after scoring the team's third goal on Friday.- Danny Tirone backstopped his first professional victory with 24 saves on Friday, and saw time in the crease during all three games last week.- Mike Fazio scored his first ECHL goal on Friday, which was assisted by Brien Diffley for his first professional point.
Central Division Standings1. Toledo Walleye 14-2-2-0, 30 pts.2. Cincinnati Cyclones 13-5-2-1, 29 pts.3. Fort Wayne Komets 10-9-0-0, 18 pts.4. Indy Fuel 9-10-0-0, 18 pts.5. WHEELING NAILERS 7-10-1-0, 15 pts.6. Kalamazoo Wings 7-10-0-1, 15 pts.
Team LeadersGoals: Troy Josephs- 12Assists: Nick Saracino & Kevin Spinozzi- 9Points: Troy Josephs- 18Penalty Minutes: Cedric Lacroix- 63Plus/Minus: Troy Josephs- +6Wins: John Muse- 4Goals Against Average: John Muse- 2.98Save Percentage: John Muse- .892
Next Big Promotional NightSaturday, December 15th- NailerMania - WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley, Teddy Bear Toss, Wear Your Ugly SweaterFamily Four Packs are available for Marvel Super Hero Night and NailerMania. Fans can get four tickets, four hats, and four McDonald's meal vouchers for $60.
Next Five Home GamesFriday, December 7th vs. Fort Wayne Komets, 7:05 p.m.Sunday, December 9th vs. Indy Fuel, 3:05 p.m.Wednesday, December 12th vs. Allen Americans, 7:05 p.m.Saturday, December 15th vs. Norfolk Admirals, 7:05 p.m.Sunday, December 16th vs. Fort Wayne Komets, 3:05 p.m.