K-Wings thump Thunder; Taylor sets franchise points record

Justin Taylor

The Kalamazoo Wings (30-25-1-3) picked up two points and Justin Taylor etched his name into the K-Wings record books with the team’s 6-3 victory over the Adirondack Thunder on Sunday at Wings Event Center.

The K-Wings defeated the Brampton Beast on Friday by a score of 5-4 and lost to the Toledo Walleye 3-0 on Saturday night.

Wasting little time, the K-Wings were able to take an early lead just three minutes into the opening period due to a strange play. Ben Wilson slapped the puck toward the net from the blueline with the puck sliding past the Thunder netminder, Mason McDonald, for a 1-0 lead.

Toward the end of the period, the K-Wings took a 2-0 lead on a Charlie Vasaturo goal. The goal by Vasaturo was his seventh of the season.
Keeping up the pressure in the second period, the K-Wings added to their lead just 46 seconds in. With the team on the power play that carried over from the first period, a Blake Kessel shot was redirected to Justin Taylor, who put it away for his 28th of the season.
Less than four minutes later and on yet another man-advantage try, the K-Wings were able to take a 4-0 lead as Taylor was able to take an Eric Kattelus pass to the net for his second goal of the night. Taylor passed Sam Ftorek as the K-Wings’ ECHL franchise record holder in career points with 272.
The Thunder roared back to life later in the period as they scored a pair of goals in a span of twelve seconds. Patch Alber and J.C. Campagna scored the back-to-back goals to cut the K-Wings lead to 4-2.
Minutes into the third period, the K-Wings took a three-goal lead. Cam Darcy scored his second as a K-Wing to give the home team a 5-2 lead.
Continuing their fight, the Thunder’s Brett Pollock scored his 13th of the season to bring the Thunder to within two goals.
Sealing the victory with an empty net on the other end, Brian Hart launched a 140 foot drive from his own zone that zipped down the ice and into the unoccupied goal to cap off a 6-3 victory on home ice for Kalamazoo.
With the victory, the K-Wings remain in fourth place in the Central Division, with 64 points and a spot in the playoffs.

The K-Wings remain at home this weekend as they battle the division leading Toledo Walleye on both Friday and Saturday nights. Both games begin at 7 pm. Toledo is the only team in the ECHL to have already clinched their spot in the playoffs.

K-Wings News and Notes

Friday vs. Brampton – Peter Schneider is on a four game point streak (six total points)… Cam Darcy is on a five game point streak… Justin Taylor set a new career high with his 27th goal and 50th point of the season… Nick Riopel has won nine of his last ten starts… Kalamazoo has matched a season high with five straight wins… The Wings finished the season with a 7-0-1-0 record against Brampton… Michael Trebish was a game-high +3 rating.
Saturday at Toledo – The loss snapped the K-Wings’ five-game winning streak… Kalamazoo outshot Toledo, 34-21… Kalamazoo ended the season with a 2-2-0-1 record at Toledo… The K-Wings were shutout for the sixth time on the season… Tanner Sorenson led Kalamazoo with five shots on goal… Kalamazoo went 0/4 on the power play and 5/6 on the penalty kill.

Sunday vs. Adirondack -Justin Taylor has 14 multi-point games on the season… Nick Riopel has won 10 of his last 11 starts… Kalamazoo went 6-1-0 in a stretch that featured seven games in ten days… Cameron Darcy has nine points in his seven games since being re-assigned to Kalamazoo… Kalamazoo’s six goals tied a season high for most goals in a single game.

By: Mark C. McGlothlen

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