Kaczperski, Heartlanders Puzzle Nailers, 2-1
WHEELING, WV- A weekend that started out with a bang on Friday night for the Wheeling Nailers ended in lots of frustration. The Iowa Heartlanders collected back-to-back road victories at WesBanco Arena, as their netminders combined to stop 68 of 71 shots in a 4-2 win on Saturday and a 2-1 score on Sunday. Zach White's second-period goal provided the difference for the Heartlanders, who got 33 saves from Corbin Kaczperski. Justin Almeida was the lone Wheeling goal scorer.
Both teams utilized the power play to their advantage in the first period, as the two sides played to a 1-1 draw. Iowa got on the board first at the 7:38 mark with a 5-on-3 goal, as Zach White scooted the puck across the slot to Kaid Oliver who chucked a backhander in from the left side. The Nailers answered a little more than three minutes later. Justin Almeida stepped up into the left circle and drove a wrist shot into the top-left corner.
Wheeling controlled a good portion of the play in the middle frame by outshooting the Heartlanders, 11-6. However, the lone goal went to the visitors off of a defensive zone turnover. Zach White picked off a pass in the slot, then waited out Stefanos Lekkas to tuck in a forehand shot.
The Nailers put 11 more shots on goal in the third period and received a pair of power-play chances, but were unable to pot a tying goal, as they fell, 2-1.
Corbin Kaczperski earned the win for Iowa, as he turned aside 33 of the 34 shots he faced. Stefanos Lekkas suffered the defeat for Wheeling, as he made 16 saves on 18 shots.
The Nailers will spend the next week on the road, as they will visit the Cincinnati Cyclones on Wednesday and Friday at 7:35, before wrapping up the trip on Saturday in Toledo at 7:15. Wheeling will then return to WesBanco Arena for a three-game homestand on February 4th, 5th, and 6th against Indy, Iowa, and Cincinnati. A couple of big upcoming promotions at home games include Pittsburgh Penguins Night on February 12th and Throwback Night on March 25th. Season memberships, single-game tickets, and partial packages are available, and fans can get more information by calling (304) 234-GOAL. The Wheeling Nailers considered one of the top things to do in Wheeling, West Virginia, provide affordable family entertainment for fans throughout the Ohio Valley.