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Wheeling Nailers


Nailers Battle Ice and Komets for Win

For the second time this season, the Nailers had to sit through an hour-plus ice repair delay

Nailers Battle Ice and Komets for Win

WHEELING, W.Va. – For the second time this season, the Nailers had to sit through an hour-plus ice repair delay. This time it was at home as a large chunk of ice came up near one of the alternate entrances to the ice. The stoppage occurred with just 4:30 remaining in the hockey game with the Nailers ahead 4-3.

Felix Paré had just scored his second of the contest at the 8:17 mark to put the Nailers ahead 4-3. After killing a penalty to Matt Foley for tripping, the final media timeout was whistled and during that timeout, a rather large chunk of ice was noticed to not be in place. The teams were sent to the dressing room as the Wesbanco Arena ice crew got to work to fix the ice.

When play resumed some 90-plus minutes later, it seemed the Komets came out with more energy and was able to tie the game at 16:26 of the third period less than a minute after play resumed. Matthew Boudens was able to squeeze the puck between Nailers goalie Louis-Philip Guindon and his stick side post.

“We’d been in the ice situation before and we wanted to dictate the pace out of the gate, but credit to Fort Wayne, they came out guns blazing and we had a little mistake. I didn’t love but it was one and they come out hot and capitalized.” Nailers Head Coach Derek Army said of the Komets’ tying goal.

The Nailers would end regulation and start overtime on the penalty kill and while the Komets were not able to put the puck in the net, they did have many good looks, but Guindon held his ground. The Nailers would then get a power play of their own with just over three minutes left in the overtime. Former Nailer Zach Tolkinen was called for tripping, and from there the Nailers seemed to have control of the pace of play.

After the penalty was over and the game returned to 3-on-3 the Nailers had possession and came in hard down the left-wing side. The initial shot by Matt Alfaro came from the slot and Komet goalie Jiri Patera made the save while sliding left to right across the goal mouth. The rebound went straight to Josh Maniscalco who put the puck past Patera to give Wheeling the victory.

“That one felt good,” Army said. “It was a roller coaster of emotions on the bench, but I thought going back all the way to the second, the way the guys battled and came back and that was huge. Obviously, to give up the lead with four minutes to go, could have been fragile and packed it in. But we had a couple of huge kills and it was great by us, so I’m very proud of the guys.”

Boudens and Marcus McIvor scored in the first for the Komets. The Nailers tied and took the lead in the second as Paré, Tyler Drevitch and Maniscalco all lit the lamp for Wheeling in the second. Only a minute into the third, Connor Corcoran tied the game at 3-3 to set in motion the wild finish.

The Komets return to action on Wednesday night at the Indiana Farmers Coliseum against the Fuel at 7 pm. The Nailers’ next game is on Friday also at the Fuel. Game time is 7 pm.

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    John Hafer covers the Wheeling Nailers for Field Pass Hockey. Follow and interact with him on Twitter @FPHNailers.

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