After defeating the Fort Wayne Komets (30-15-5-1) on Valentine’s Day by a score of 3-1, the Kalamazoo Wings (24-23-1-3) hit the road for a pair of weekend games.
Traveling to Fort Wayne on Friday, the K-Wings and Komets tangled for the third time in a week. The game between the two rivals was the last of the regular season.
Scoring the only goal of the game in the opening period, the Komets skated away with a 1-0 win.
Following the game on Friday, the K-Wings made the trek to Wheeling, West Virginia for a game against the Nailers on Saturday night.
On Saturday, the K-Wings battled back to come from behind on four different occasions, but in the end a power play goal by Wheelings Danny Fick sealed their fate as the Nailers defeated the K-Wings 5-4.
Just over two minutes into the opening period, and on the power play, the Nailer’s Cody Wydo gave the home team an early 1-0 lead with his 20th goal of the season.
Bouncing back four minutes later, a Kyle Bushee shot bounced off the post. Lane Scheidl took the rebound and put it into the net for his 19th of the year.
Like the first period, the Nailer struck early in the second. Nick Sorkin sent a wrister past netminder Joel Martin for a 2-1 advantage. Again, like in the opening period, the K-Wings bounced right back. Josh Pitt scored his ninth goal of the season just two minutes later to tie the game.
Later on in the period, the Nailers punched in their third goal of the game, courtesy of Garrett Meurs. The goal by Meurs was his 19th of the season.
The ping pong match continued as the K-Wings were able to tie the game at three goals apiece late in the period. Tyler Biggs sent a shot toward the net as he fell to the ice, the shot bounced off a stick and into the net for his eighth of the season.
Continuing with their theme of scoring early, the Nailers regained the lead just over five minutes into the final frame on a goal by Kevin Schulze.
Refusing to go away, Scheidl scored his second of the night while on the power play. Martin fired the puck to the Wheeling line and the pass was hauled in by Scheidl, who raced forward and sent the puck flying to the back of the net to tie the game once more.
On their fourth power play of the game and with less than four minutes to go, the Nailers muscled their way into the lead. After Martin made a series of close-range saves, the puck bounced out to Fick, who poked it in giving the Nailers a 5-4 lead.
A flurry of chances with Martin on the bench and an extra attacker on the ice fell flat in the closing minutes, and the Nailers earned the 5-4 win.
The K-Wings host the Cincinnati Cyclones today at 10:30 am for the final Education Day Game of the year.
K-Wings News and Notes
Friday vs. Fort Wayne: Fort Wayne won the season series, 5-4… The loss was Nick Riopel’s first in his last five starts… Kalamazoo has been shut out five times on the season and twice in their last two road games… Josh Pitt left the game in the second period with an injury and didn’t return…Kalamazoo’s power play went 0/6 and the penalty kill went 3/3.
Saturday vs. Wheeling: Josh Pitt has points in four of his last five games… Joel Martin made 37 saves and Doug Carr made 36… Kalamazoo is 3-4-0-1 against Wheeling this season…Wheeling’s power play went 3/4 and Kalamazoo’s went 1/4…Kalamazoo were outshot, 42-40.
Submitted by Mark McGlothlen