FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 20, 2021
TAYLOR HAT TRICK FUELS K-WINGS TO VICTORY
Justin Taylor records first hat trick of the season as K-Wings race past Fuel
INDIANAPOLIS, IN – The Kalamazoo Wings (6-4-0-0) offense reignited in the second period against the Indy Fuel (4-7-1-0) in a 5-3 victory on Saturday night at Indiana Farmer's Coliseum.
The game got off to a slow start as the first goal did not come until 3:58 remaining in the first period. Fuel Forward Cedric LaCroix was called for hooking, putting the K-Wings on their first power play of the night. Great passing left Captain Justin Taylor wide open in front of the net to start the scoring.
The scoring escalated in the second frame. Taylor was responsible for opening the flood gates. With 14:29 remaining, following a boarding penalty on the Fuel, Taylor found the net on a rebound the power play to make it 2-0 Kalamazoo.
Two minutes later, Jake Slaker intercepted a pass in the neutral zone, put on the jets, and drained a slap shot in the top corner of the net. Newly minted K-Wing Defenseman Giovanni Vallati caught the Fuel asleep during a line change and banged a slap shot from between the circles to put Kalamazoo up 4-0.
Indy would answer back. Fuel Forward Spencer Watson scored off a face-off to break the Indy Fuel seal. Fuel Defenseman Cliff Watson (no relation to Spencer) found the net on a shot from the top of the left circle to make it 4-2.
In the third frame, the comeback attempt would continue for the Fuel. At 5:48 into the third, Tanner Sorenson was called for boarding. Indy forward Seamus Malone would score on the ensuing power play to make it 4-3. Five minutes later, Greg Betzold took the puck on a wrap-around attempting to score, and Taylor banged home the rebound for his third of the night, giving the K-Wings some much-needed breathing room.
Jet Greaves stopped 32 of 35 shots face. Indy Fuel Starting Goaltender Mitch Gillam was pulled after stopping 11 of 15 shots midway thru the second period. Tom Aubrun entered in relief and stopped 8 of the 9 shots he faced.
The Kalamazoo Wings are a professional hockey team located in southwest Michigan that has been a staple in the Kalamazoo, MI professional sports landscape since 1974. The K-Wings compete in the ECHL and are the AA affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Columbus Blue Jackets and American Hockey League’s Cleveland Monsters. Kalamazoo plays their 36 regular season home games at Wings Event Center from October through April.