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Wings cruise through finale with 5-2 win over Nailers

Published: 136 days ago

KALAMAZOO, MI—Two point nights from five different skaters helped the Kalamazoo Wings to a 5-2 victory over the Wheeling Nailers during the regular season finale on Saturday night at Wings Event Center.

Looking to respond to last night’s road loss to the Nailers, the Wings looked like a different team in the opening minutes of tonight’s game. While killing a penalty, Kalamazoo got the puck out of their own end and counter-attacked towards the Wheeling goal. Peter Schneider whipped a long shot to the goal which was punched away by Nailers’ goalie Doug Carr, but the rebound was left unoccupied on the doorstep for Lane Scheidl to deposit into the goal.

With less than twenty seconds remaining in the period, the Nailers created a scramble in front of the goal and the mayhem paid off. Though Ross McMullan’s shot was fought off by Joel Martin, the rebound slid into the slot where it was spun through Martin’s legs by Kale Kerbashian, tying the game at one through twenty minutes.

Kalamazoo didn’t let the game stay even for long, as their offensive attack regained its footing in the middle of the second frame. Cam Darcy danced his way into the Nailers zone and dropped a backhand feed to the doorstep, where Scheidl was waiting to bury his second of the night.

With less than a minute to go in the period and on the power play, the Wings established their first multi-goal lead of the game. Scott Henegar swiped the puck from a Wheeling defender and snapped it towards the goal, where it was stopped by Carr. However, Carr left the rebound on the back door and Justin Taylor chased it down and cashed in on the open net to build a 3-1 lead going into the second intermission.

Kalamazoo maintained their ferocious attack in the opening minute of the final period and struck for their third unanswered goal of the game. Justin Taylor saucered a beautiful backhand pass across the ice that connected with Tanner Sorenson, who scurried into the Wheeling zone and found the far-side of the goal for his 20th of the season.

Just over a minute later, Kalamazoo built up their lead to a game-high four goals by crashing the goal and capitalizing on the flat-footed Nailers’ defense. Kyle Blaney sailed a long wrist shot that ricocheted off the pad of Carr, and landed on the stick of Brian Hart for a put-back finish that established a 5-1 lead.

The Nailers wouldn’t go down without a last ditch comeback effort, and Tyler Currier notched his 20th goal of the season with a top-corner seeking shot from just inside the blue line.

Currier’s goal was all that Wheeling had left in the tank, and the Wings secured a 5-2 victory during their regular season finale.

Next: Kalamazoo @ Toledo Walleye, Round One-Game One (best-of-seven series)- Friday, April 14, 7:35 p.m., Huntington Center.

Broadcast information: Friday’s game will air on AM 1660 The Fan in Kalamazoo or online at www.1660thefan.com/listen-live.

Notes: Schneider’s point streak has improved to 14 games… The Kalamazoo Wings finished the regular season with a 38-30-1-3 (80 points) record… Martin tied a season high with 45 saves during the triumph…Five skaters had multi-point nights… Darcy has points in 10 of his last 11 games…Kalamazoo went 1/4 on the power play and 4/4 with a shorthanded goal on the penalty kill… The Wings finished the season with a 3-6-0-1 record against Wheeling.

Stats: http://www.echl.com/game-summary?game_id=14768

Single-game tickets are on sale! Tickets start as low as $10 and can be purchased at www.kwings.com/tickets/schedule or at the Wings Event Center box office.

Wings Event Center, owned and operated by Greenleaf Hospitality Group, is home to the minor league hockey team Kalamazoo Wings and a full entertainment venue offering concerts, sporting events, family shows and trade shows. Built in 1974, Wings Event Center values partnerships with the community to bring events and attractions that enrich the lives of residents in the Kalamazoo area.

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