The Wheeling Nailers have earned wins in all but four of the buildings they have played in this season. Unfortunately, Toledo’s Huntington Center will not see a regular season triumph for Wheeling, as the Toledo Walleye had their way on Saturday night. Toledo scored three times in the first period and twice in the third, while Neil Conway was perfect on 32 shots, as the Walleye were victorious, 5-0.
The Walleye got off to another stellar start on home ice, scoring three times in a span of 5:26 during the first period. The first goal came at the 9:26 mark, when Justin Mercier stole the puck on the left side of his own blueline, before breaking down that side of the ice, and ripping in a wrist shot from the circle. 63 seconds later, Toledo picked up its second marker, as AJ Jenks rang a shot in off of the right post from the left wing wall. The third tally came on a power play for the home team, as Tyler Barnes slipped a pass through the slot to Shane Berschbach, who roofed a shot from the right circle.
Neither team was able to light the lamp in the second period, but in the final frame, the Walleye salted away their victory with two more goals. At the 13:19 mark, Anthony Luciani poked a puck free in the trapezoid to Kyle Rogers who tapped home a goal from the top of the crease. Then, with 3:28 to go, Troy Schwab netted the final goal in the 5-0 tilt, burying a wrist shot from the right circle.
Neil Conway earned the shutout win in goal for Toledo, stopping all 32 shots he faced. Eric Hartzell was saddled with the loss for Wheeling, making 27 saves on 32 shots.
The Nailers will travel to Kalamazoo for a 3:00 game against the Wings on Sunday, before starting a stretching of four straight home games on Friday against the Elmira Jackals.