Four-Goal Second Fires Nailers Past Icemen


 It took a bit longer than they had hoped, but once the Wheeling Nailers got one, the goals started to pour into the net against the Evansville Icemen on Tuesday night. David Gilbert lit the lamp twice in a four-goal second period, as the Nailers erased a 1-0 deficit for a 5-2 victory at Ford Center. Eric Hartzell backstopped the triumph with 38 saves, as Clark Donatelli tied Doug Sauter’s team record with his 124th career win as head coach.

One goal was scored during the first period, and unfortunately for the Nailers, it went the other way for the second straight tilt. Evansville slid a power play shot to the front of the goal, where it was redirected by Jarrett Lukin. The tip had just enough juice behind it to squeeze through Eric Hartzell’s legs, trickling over the goal line by less than a foot.

The middle frame was a completely different story for Wheeling, who matched a season-high with four goals in a single period. The outburst started at the 1:59 mark, when Derek Army took a Zack Torquato pass, faking to his backhand in the slot, before beating Branden Komm on his stick side. Shortly before the midway mark of the period, the Nailers took their first lead of the series, as David Gilbert tapped in an alley-oop pass from Bobby Shea on the right side of the crease. With 4:31 remaining, Torquato added to his two assists with a goal, as he converted on a shot from the middle of the slot. Gilbert tacked on his second marker of the evening prior to the intermission, following up his initial pass with a backhander over the sprawled out goaltender.

The Icemen cut Wheeling’s lead to two at the 7:24 mark of the third period on a goal by Daniel Johnston from the left circle, but that was all of the damage done by the home team. Tyler Fernandez clinched a 5-2 victory for the Nailers, when he potted an empty net tally off of a rush down the right side.

Eric Hartzell snagged the win for Wheeling, dusting away 38 of the 40 shots he faced. Branden Komm took the loss for Evansville, making 29 saves on 33 shots.

The Nailers will return home on Friday for a 7:35 p.m. game against the Kalamazoo Wings.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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