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Fresh-Legged Nailers Cruise Past Komets, 5-1

Photo by Joe Lovell Wheeling’s Felix Pare battles for the puck during Sunday’s game against Fort Wayne.

WHEELING, WV- The Wheeling Nailers got down to business in a big way on Sunday afternoon at WesBanco Arena, as they used their day of rest to their advantage. Five different players found the back of the net, including Chris Ortiz and Cedric Desruisseaux, who both had a goal and an assist. Louis-Philip Guindon took care of the rest, as he made 30 saves to propel the Nailers to the 5-1 home ice triumph over the Fort Wayne Komets.

The two teams played to a scoreless first period, despite that fact that both teams took 13 shots. The goals got rolling in the middle frame, and it was Wheeling who struck first at the 7:37 mark. Cedric Desruisseaux sauced a pass through the slot for Chris Ortiz, who stepped into the left circle, and drove a shot into the left side of the net. Tim Doherty scored from a similar spot later in the stanza, as he took a pass from Justin Almeida, and drove a shot just inside of the right post. The Komets got a goal back, when Matt Alvaro grabbed a loose puck off of Adam Brubacher’s initial try, and stashed a shot into the right side of the goal.

However, with 1:11 left, Wheeling re-established its two-goal advantage. Felix Pare picked off a pass in neutral ice, then immediately rushed into the offensive zone, where he delivered a pass through the low slot to Desruisseaux, who flicked in a backhander from the right side.

The Nailers put the game away in the third period, as they added two more markers to the winning side. Patrick Watling whipped in a shot from the right circle for his 30th goal of the season, then Josh Maniscalco slammed in a one-timer on the power play from the left circle, as Wheeling was victorious, 5-1.

Louis-Philip Guindon turned in a strong performance between the pipes for the Nailers, as he earned the win by denying 30 of the 31 shots he faced. Mario Culina took the loss for Fort Wayne, as he allowed four goals on 22 shots, before giving way to Cameron Gray, who made one save on two shots in relief.

The Nailers will begin the coming week with a pair of road games, as they will visit the Iowa Heartlanders on Wednesday at 8:00, then travel to Indy to face the Fuel on Friday at 7:00. Wheeling will play a pair of home games against the Toledo Walleye on Saturday at 7:10 and Sunday at 4:10. Fans can come see the Kelly Cup on Saturday, then Sunday has a post game skate featuring the entire team. Fan Appreciation Night is also right around the corner, when the Nailers battle the Komets on April 15th at 7:10. Season memberships, single game tickets, and partial packages are available, and fans can get more information by calling (304) 234-GOAL.

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