WHEELING, WV- The Reading Royals have been on a roll lately, and that continued at WesBanco Arena on Wednesday night, as they picked up their seventh straight win. Matt Abt scored twice for the Wheeling Nailers and Nick Saracino joined him in the goal column, but Wheeling fell, 6-3.
One goal was scored in the opening stanza, and that went to the Royals, who also held a 13-7 advantage in shots on net. Rob Michel made his way into the right circle, and with the puck on edge, sent a fluttering wrist shot into the top-left corner of the cage.
The second period followed a different script, as the two clubs combined to light the lamp six times. Marly Quince extended Reading's lead at the 2:22 mark, as he capitalized off a turnover in front of the net. Matt Abt put the Nailers on the board 42 seconds later, as he cruised into the left circle to score on a wrist shot. Brayden Low tipped in Miles Gendron's point shot for the Royals at 5:42, before Nick Saracino roofed a power play marker from the left side of the slot to bring Wheeling within one. Unfortunately for the home side, Reading tallied twice more before the break, as Thomas Ebbing wound into the slot at the 14:41 mark, then Corey Mackin stashed in a loose puck from the right circle with 1:36 left in the stanza.
Abt potted his second goal of the night with a wrist shot from the right point, but Steven Swavely's shorthanded empty netter put the wraps on a 6-3 Royals win.
Felix Sandstrom picked up the victory for Reading, stopping 30 of the 33 shots he faced. Alex D'Orio made 30 saves on 35 shots in the defeat for the Nailers.
The Nailers will hit the road for three games this weekend, as they will visit Cincinnati on Friday at 7:35, Kalamazoo on Saturday at 7:00, and Brampton on Sunday at 4:00. Wheeling will then return home for two games next weekend. First up is Frosty Friday against the Maine Mariners on February 28th at 7:05. Then, fans will have the chance to meet 2009 Stanley Cup Champion Max Talbot as part of Pittsburgh Penguins Night on February 29th against the Cincinnati Cyclones at 7:05. Friends & Family Ticket Packages are available for all Saturday home games, which include four tickets, four Tito's Sloppy Doggs and a $10 voucher to the team shop for $52. The Wheeling Nailers, considered one of the top things to do in Wheeling, West Virginia, provide affordable family entertainment for fans throughout the Ohio Valley. For information on season tickets, group tickets, partial plans, and more, call (304) 234-GOAL.