Wheeling Nailers Week in Review

By Ron Valerino


Monday, December 31 Roanoke 3 @ Wheeling 4

This was the second meeting of the season between the Express and the Nailers with the Express winning the first game 4-1 in Wheeling on October 27. In this game the Express opened up a 1-0 lead on a Mike Peron goal at 5:43 of the first period. Wheeling tied the score at 1-1 at 7:13 on a Mark Major goal with Dylan Gyori and Mike Hurley assisting. Roanoke would score two more times in the first period and lead 3-1 through the first 20 minutes. In the second period the Nailers would get back to within one on a Ken Tasker goal at 8:21. Derek Ernest and Doug Schmidt assisted of the goal. The Nailers tied the game 3-3 at 13:14 of the second period on Major’s second goal of the game with Hurley and Kurt Drummond assisting. The Nailers took their first lead of the game at 4-3 just :40 into the third period on a Hurley goal. Major and Gyori assisted on the game winning goal. Tyler MacKay made 32 saves on 35 shots for the win.

Friday, January 4 Peoria 1 @ Wheeling 3

In the season series with the Rivermen, the Nailers were 1-3-0 entering this contest. Jeremy Brown gave the Nailers a 1-0 lead in the first period with a power play goal at 11:31. Chris Wells and Mike Hurley picked up the assists on the only goal scored in the first period. Dmitri Doulebenets increased the Nailers lead to 2-0 at 2:45 of the second period with Bruce Watson and Arpad Mihaly assisting. Peoria scored their only goal of the game at 7:16 of the second period to make it a 2-1 game. Before the second period ended Mihaly scored from Kurt Drummond to give the Nailers a 3-1 advantage. Neither team scored in the third period and the Nailers moved into a second place tie with Peoria in the Northwest Division with the 3-1 win. Tyler MacKay won his second straight game by making 36 saves on 37 Peoria shots.

Saturday, January 5 Peoria 3 @ Wheeling 4

With a win in this meeting against Peoria the Nailers would have second place in the Northwest Division by themselves. Wheeling scored twice in the first period to take a 2-0 lead on Peoria. The first goal was scored by Derek Ernest, his second of the season, with Chris Wells and Brendan Walsh assisting. The Nailers second goal came at 18:46 from Bruce Watson. Arpad Mihaly and Bruce Watson assisted on the goal. At 1:58 of the second period the Rivermen scored to get to within one goal at 2-1. Wheeling answered by scoring two more times before the second period ended to increase their lead to 4-1. Kurt Drummond scored the Nailers third goal of the game at 13:06 of the second period with Jeremy Brown and Derek Ernest assisting. The Nailers final goal of the game came at 18:57 of the second period when Mike Hurley scored from Dylan Gyori and Drummond. Peoria scored two third period goals at 8:40 and 19:50 to make the final score 4-3. Tyler MacKay extended his win streak to three games with 34 saves on 37 shots.


Friday, January 11Dayton @ Wheeling 7:30p.m.

The Nailers play the first place team in their division for the fourth time this season. The Nailers are 1-2-0 against the Bombers with the only win coming at home on December 16 by the score of 3-1.

Saturday, January 12Wheeling @ Greensboro 7:30p.m.

The Nailers travel to Greensboro to play the Generals for the only time this season. Greensboro does not come to Wheeling at any time during this season.

Sunday, January 13 Atlantic City @ Wheeling 6:00p.m.

The Nailers are 1-2-0 against the Boardwalk Bullies this season. The Nailers won the only previous game in Wheeling 5-3 on November 11. The Nailers have lost twice in Atlantic City, both times 3-2. After this game all fans are invited to join the Nailers players in a post game skate.

Brophy Countdown to 1000
By going 3-0-0 this past week the Nailers are now 19-15-1 for the season and with the 19 wins, head coach John Brophy is 17 wins away from his 1000th professional coaching victory. His total stands at 983 wins.

Player of the Week

The Nailers Player of the Week is Mike Hurley. Hurley had five points in three games this past week on two goals and three assists. Both of his goals were game winning goals. He also played at a +1 in the +/- category. Mike is second on the team in scoring with 35 points on 13 goals and 22 assists. He also leads the team with four game winning goals and tied for the team lead with three power play goals.

Goaltender of the Week

The Nailers Goaltender of the Week is Tyler MacKay. MacKay played all three games last week for the Nailers and posted a 3-0-0 record. He made 102 saves on 109 shots faced for a .936 save percentage. He also had a goals against average of 2.33 for the week. For the season, MacKay is 9-5-0 with a goals against average of 2.95 and a save percentage of .910.


Wheeling Nailers forward Jeremy Brown has been called up to the Saint John Flames of the American Hockey League (AHL). Brown played in 17 games with the Nailers from November 29 through January 6. In his last game with the team he registered one assist in a 4-3 win over Peoria.

Special thanks to Ned Bowdern – Wheeling Nailers for his contribution.