WHEELING, WV- 2009 Stanley Cup Champion Max Talbot helped bring in a crowd of 4,040 at WesBanco Arena on Saturday night, as the Wheeling Nailers celebrated Pittsburgh Penguins Night. Unfortunately, it was the Cincinnati Cyclones who celebrated a victory, as they scored five of the game's final six goals, while limiting Wheeling to just 12 shots on goal in a 5-2 result. Cam Brown and Renars Krastenbergs were the goal scorers for the Nailers.
The teams played a scoreless first period, but that result changed early in the middle frame. Wheeling got on the board first with a power play marker, as Brandon Hawkins swiped a pass across the slot to Cam Brown, who wired in a wrist shot from the bottom of the right circle. Unfortunately, the lead lasted for just ten seconds, as John Wiitala tied things up for the Cyclones by wristing a shot just inside the right post. Later in the stanza, Jesse Schultz capitalized on a turnover for Cincinnati, then Ben Johnson put the visitors ahead by two, when he rang a shot off the left post and into the net.
Nate Mitton expanded the lead for the Cyclones with a one-timer from below the right circle at the 2:35 mark of the third period, before Wheeling's Renars Krastenbergs and Cincinnati's Tobie Bisson exchanged tallies, giving the game a 5-2 final score in favor of the Cyclones.
Michael Houser got the win for Cincinnati, as he made ten saves on 12 shots. Emil Larmi suffered the defeat for the Nailers, stopping 23 of the 28 shots he faced.
The Nailers will play their next four games on the road, starting on Sunday at 5:15 against the Toledo Walleye. Wheeling's next home game is Education Day on March 10th at 10:45 a.m. That week will feature a total of four home contests, highlighted by St. Hat Tricks Day on Saturday, March 14th at 7:05. St. Hat Tricks Day will feature specialty jerseys, as well as a hat giveaway to the first 2,000 fans, and Irish Drink Specials. 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.