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Nailers at Walleye Game Day Snap Shot, Mar. 1

Friday, March 1st
Nailers at Walleye Game Day Snap Shot, Mar. 1

WHEELING NAILERS(25-24-5-1, 56 PTS, 5th Central, 9th West)190 GF, 183 GAPP: 21.7% (50-for-230), 5thPK: 80.7% (197-for-244), 20th

NHL Affiliate: Pittsburgh PenguinsAHL Affiliate: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

9-F-Yushiroh Hirano (15 goals, 30 assists, 45 points in 50 games)23-F-Michael Phillips (15 goals, 19 assists, 34 points in 55 games)22-D-Kevin Spinozzi (14 goals, 19 assists, 33 points in 32 games)12-F-Renars Krastenbergs (14 goals, 19 assists, 33 points in 47 games)14-F-Cedric Lacroix (17 goals, 13 assists, 30 points in 54 games)5-D-Dan Fick (4 goals, 22 assists, 26 points in 50 games)31-G-Jordan Ruby (8-5-2 record, 2.73 GAA, .912 Sv% in 17 games)

TOLEDO WALLEYE(31-14-5-3, 70 PTS, 2nd Central, T-2nd West)185 GF, 173 GAPP: 18.8% (46-for-245), 8thPK: 82.8% (168-for-203), 15th

NHL Affiliate: Detroit Red WingsAHL Affiliate: Grand Rapids Griffins

10-F-Shane Berschbach (17 goals, 33 assists, 50 points in 49 games)86-F-Greg Wolfe (16 goals, 29 assists, 45 points in 51 games)43-D-Matt Register (11 goals, 31 assists, 42 points in 53 games)16-F-Bryan Moore (14 goals, 16 assists, 30 points in 38 games)15-F-Dylan Sadowy (14 goals, 15 assists, 29 points in 28 games)27-F-A.J. Jenks (14 goals, 15 assists, 29 points in 37 games)30-G-Pat Nagle (17-9-3 record, 2.97 GAA, .903 Sv% in 31 games)

Head-to-HeadSeason Series: Walleye 3, Nailers 2Season Series at Huntington Center: Nailers 2, Walleye 0All-Time Series: Walleye 43, Nailers 35All-Time Series at Huntington Center: Walleye 24, Nailers 11

Rising and ShiningThe Wheeling Nailers were more than ready for Tuesday's early start time, as they aced the test on School Day in Brampton. Wheeling charged out of the gates, with Alec Butcher banking in the game's opening goal just 1:26 into the contest. Yushiroh Hirano added to the lead with a beautiful stickhandling move in the slot, then Brad Drobot slammed home the rebound of Craig Skudalski's shot, making the score 3-0, while chasing Beast goaltender Jake Paterson from the net. Reggie Traccitto put a brief wrinkle into the score in the latter stages of the first period, but the Nailers drove forward with two goals in 16 seconds to begin the middle frame, as Cedric Lacroix and Winston Day Chief lit the lamp. Kevin Spinozzi tacked on one more marker with the man advantage, as Wheeling rolled to the 6-2 triumph. Matt O'Connor made 27 saves to earn the win in his home province.

Air Beats Sea in O.T.The Toledo Walleye and Kalamazoo Wings played a thrilling game on Wednesday night at Wings Event Center, as the two clubs combined for 79 shots on goal, while needing overtime to decide a winner. Chad McDonald of Kalamazoo opened the scoring in the first period, before Brenden Kotyk netted the equalizer during the middle frame for the Walleye. The two squads exchanged goals 1:26 apart from each other in the third, with Luke Sandler striking first for the Wings, and Trevor Hamilton responding for Toledo. At the 2:35 mark of the extra session, a pair of penalties were assessed, and Kalamazoo ended up with a power play. That led to Chris Collins' game winning goal on a rebound, as he picked the top-left corner on Walleye goaltender Kaden Fulcher, who finished with 35 saves. Toledo Head Coach Dan Watson was ejected at the end of the game, and will not be behind the bench on Friday, meaning Andy Delmore will be the man in charge of the Walleye.

Full Team EffortIn some games, individual performances can snag the headlines, and while one member of the Nailers had a special moment on Tuesday, the overall effort of the team led to Wheeling earning two points in the standings. 13 of the 16 skaters that were in the lineup recorded at least one point, setting a new season high for the team. Only four of those players were involved in the scoring of multiple goals - Johnny Austin (2A), Winston Day Chief (1G, 1A), Yushiroh Hirano (1G, 1A), and Renars Krastenbergs (2A). Furthermore, all 16 skaters were on the ice for at least one Nailers goal, and six of the 16 were on for three Wheeling markers, including Day Chief and Austin, who led the way with +3 ratings. There was one final stat that included the entire lineup, as all 16 skaters fired at least one shot on goal.

Punching in the WinnerThroughout his five-year professional career, Brad Drobot has been known for his physicality, as he has eclipsed the 100-penalty minute mark on three occasions. On Tuesday morning, Drobot dished out a bigger punch when it came to the game, as his goal at the 10:29 mark of the first period turned out to be the game winner in Wheeling's 25th victory of the season. Prior to that, Brad's last goal was scored on February 8th, 2018, when he was a member of the SPHL's Fayetteville Marksmen. 31 different skaters have suited up in a game for the Nailers this season, and the Calgary, Alberta native is the 25th of those to score a goal. Additionally, Drobot is the 16th player to score his first ECHL goal with Wheeling in 2018-19. Earlier this season, Brad eclipsed 200 games played as a pro.

Keep the Trend GoingFriday night marks the sixth of eight head-to-head meetings between the Nailers and Walleye this season, as well as the third of four battles at Huntington Center. The road teams have won all five contests in the set, and the last three have been decided in convincing fashion, including 5-2 and 8-2 victories for Wheeling. The Nailers will be looking for their third win of the year in Toledo - something they have yet to accomplish since Huntington Center opened in 2009. The last time a Wheeling team won at least three times in Toledo in the same season was 2003-04, when the Nailers took down the Storm four times at Toledo Sports Arena. Both teams will be without some of their top point producers in the season series, giving Matt Register the active lead with six points for the Walleye, while Yushiroh Hirano, Cedric Lacroix, and Michael Phillips all have five points for Wheeling. March 16th and April 5th will be the final two matches in the set, with one on the slate in each city.

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Trois-Rivières Lions @ Wheeling Nailers
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