WHEELING, WV- After playing four games in their building, the Wheeling Nailers were excited to finally welcome the Indy Fuel to WesBanco Arena on Friday night. That joyous feeling grew in the second period, when Wheeling scored three times in 5:05 to turn a 1-0 deficit into a 3-1 lead in an eventual 4-1 triumph. Jordan Frasca scored two of the three goals in the middle stanza, while Taylor Gauthier made 24 saves between the pipes.
Indy started with a strong defensive effort, as the Nailers were only able to muster a pair of shots on goal during the first period. In addition to that, the Fuel notched the opening tally at the 13:30 mark. Cameron Hillis let a long wrist shot go from just inside the blueline, which was tipped into the net by Seamus Malone.
The middle frame was a completely different story, as Wheeling came out buzzing and turned on the red light three times in a span of 5:05. Evan Vierling created the tying goal at the 2:28 mark, when he wound around the back of the net, then found Owen Headrick, who stepped up into the left circle and roofed a shot into the top-right corner. 2:14 later, Jordan Frasca put the Nailers in the lead, as he stole the puck at his own blueline and went on a breakaway, which he converted with a backhander up and under the crossbar. Frasca struck again less than three minutes after that, as he swept in a shot from the right circle while Indy had just returned to even strength.
The Nailers tacked on one more goal in the third period, and they did so on the power play. Davis Bunz slid the puck into the left circle for Jordan Martel, who smashed a one-time rocket into the left side of the cage. That put the finishing touches on the 4-1 home ice win.
Taylor Gauthier earned the victory with another solid performance in goal for Wheeling, as he thwarted 24 of the 25 shots he faced. Zach Driscoll took the loss for Indy, as he made 23 saves on 27 shots.
The Nailers will wrap up the weekend on Saturday night at 7:10, when they play host to the Cincinnati Cyclones. Saturday's match will feature an Ugly Sweater Contest. Some other exciting upcoming promotions include Kids New Year's Eve on December 31st, and the next Big Six Promotional Game - Super Nailers World on January 13th. Season memberships and other terrific ticket plans for the 2023-24 season are available now by calling (304) 234-GOAL. 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.