KALAMAZOO, MI – The Kalamazoo Wings (10-8-1-1) got back on track this weekend following back-to-back losses last weekend, as they won all three games they played.
On Friday, the K-Wings defeated the Quad City Mallards (8-12-1-0) by a score of 5-2.
Chris Francis put the Mallards on the board early in the first period with his first goal of the season. The lead did not last long, however, as Tyler Biggs tied the score with his sixth of the season just over two minutes later.
Lane Scheidl added his fifth of the year midway into the opening period to give the K-Wings a 2-1 advantage.
Biggs scored his second of the night in the second period to put the K-Wings up by a pair.
Josh McDonald scored for the Mallards in the opening minutes of the third period to cut the K-Wings lead to a single goal.
Holding off the Mallards and padding their lead later in the period, the K-Wings received goals by Jimmy Mullin and Justin Taylor, an empty-net goal, to win the game by a 5-2 score. Neither team scored on the power play. The Mallards had just one power play while the K-Wings came up empty on their two chances. The K-Wings outshot the Mallards 38 to 22.
The K-Wings hosted their annual Teddy Bear Toss night on Saturday as they battled Darryl Bootland, K-Wings head coach Nick Bootlands brother, and the Orlando Solar Bears (10-10-4-0).
It was a milestone night for two players on the ice. Kyle Bushee played in his 600th career ECHL game and Joel Martin moved up to second place in the ECHL for career minutes played by a goalie.
Just over seven minutes into the opening period, Jimmy Mullin scored his second goal in as many nights to give the K-Wings a 1-0 lead. The goal by Mullin prompted the fans to throw over 1,500 stuffed animals onto the ice. The stuffed toys will be distributed by the K-Wings players and staff this week when they travel to Bronson’s Children’s Hospital.
Knotting the game up in the second period, J.J. Piccinich scored for the Solar Bears to make it a 1-1 game.
Neither team was able to score for the remainder of regulation, although the K-Wings put 37 shots on goal and the Solar Bears added 21 of their own.
In overtime, it took just one shot, 21-seconds into the extra session for the K-Wings to declare victory as Brendan Bradley scored the game winner. Both teams came up empty on the power play.
Wrapping up the weekend, the K-Wings defeated the Wichita Thunder (16-4-2-0 by a score of 3-2.
After a scoreless first period, the K-Wings opened the second in style as Tyler Heinonen scored to give the K-Wings a 1-0 lead.
The Thunder found their scoring punch in the final minutes of the period as they scored two goals just 56 seconds apart to take a 2-1 lead.
The lead held until the midway point of the third period when Justin Taylor scored his eighth of the season to tie the game at 2-2.
Tyler Biggs added a goal later in the period after his shot initially bounced off the goaltender’s glove and then dribbled across the goal line to give the K-Wings a 3-2 advantage.
Holding on for the win, the K-Wings earned six of a possible six points on the weekend.
The K-Wings remain at home for two games this coming weekend. On Friday they host the Atlanta Gladiators and on Saturday they battle the Brampton Beast. Both games begin at 7 pm.
By: Mark C. McGlothlen