Brendan Rempel Is Number Nine For Wheeling

The Wheeling Nailers are excited to announce their ninth player signing of the 2014 offseason. Wheeling has signed defenseman Brendan Rempel to an ECHL contract.

Rempel, 23, is the first new signing of the summer for the Nailers, after he spent the 2013-14 season with the Evansville IceMen, South Carolina Stingrays, and Las Vegas Wranglers. Brendan appeared in 47 total games with the three clubs, picking up one assist and 39 penalty minutes, while specializing as a defensive defenseman. The Willington, CT native also got experience at the ECHL level during the 2012-13 campaign, as he registered two assists in five games with the Trenton Titans, including one in his lone contest at WesBanco Arena on March 30th.

“Brendan Rempel is a smart and solid defenseman, who brings a good hockey IQ to our team,” said Nailers Head Coach Clark Donatelli. “I met Brendan this summer, and while I watched him, I noticed that he is a good decision maker, and one of his strengths is that he excels at making a strong first pass, when coming out of the defensive zone,” he said.

Prior to turning pro, Rempel attended Harvard University for four years, where he majored in Economics. On the ice with the Crimson, Brendan suited up in 81 games, accumulating one goal, ten assists, 11 points, and 69 penalty minutes. His lone goal was the game-winner in a 3-2 victory over Brown University on November 2, 2012. The blueliner also represented Team USA in 2008-09 with the Under-18 Team, playing with the likes of Cam Fowler and Philip Samuelsson, along with a myriad of other players who have reached the National Hockey League.

“I spoke with some current and former players with the Nailers, and they told me that everyone gets along really well, and that there is great support from the surrounding community,” Rempel said. “I am coming off of my first professional season, and I am happy with the habits I formed as a defensive defenseman. Now, it is time for me to come to Wheeling, and develop my role as a simple, physical presence for the Nailers,” he said.

Brendan Rempel and the Wheeling Nailers drop the puck on the 2014-15 regular season against the Reading Royals on Saturday, October 18th at 7:35.

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Nailers Sign Jarrett Burton

The Wheeling Nailers announced the signing of their eighth player signing of the 2014 offseason. Wheeling has signed forward Jarrett Burton to an ECHL contract.

Burton, 23, joined the Nailers at the conclusion of the 2013-14 season, following a four-year collegiate career at Clarkson University. Jarrett made his professional debut in Wheeling’s 5-1 win over Elmira on March 30th, while also appearing in the club’s 3-0 triumph over Toledo on April 2nd. He recorded one shot on goal during each tilt, while posting an even rating.

“Jarrett Burton is a player who joined our team at the end of last season, and although he saw limited game action, he showed good practice habits, worked hard, and proved to be very coachable,” said Nailers Head Coach Clark Donatelli. “Jarrett is a good center, who takes care of his own end, and will ultimately create offensive chances by playing solid defense,” he said.

During his time with the Golden Knights, Burton put up strong numbers both on the ice and in the classroom, as he was named to the ECAC Hockey All-Academic Team as a sophomore, junior, and senior. After collecting a total of 14 points in his first 64 games at Clarkson, Jarrett’s productivity reached new heights during his junior season. In 2012-13, the Echo Bay, ON native compiled 12 goals and 20 points in 35 games, before tacking on 11 goals and 20 points in 42 games as a senior in 2013-14. Burton’s junior season efforts led him to the team’s Richmond Unsung Hero Award, while his senior season performance helped earn him the Fran Neragin Award, presented to the player who displays unselfish play and sportsmanship both on and off of the ice.

“Wheeling is a first class organization, and it was good for me to get that taste at the end of last season, making it very attractive for me to come back,” Burton said. “The coaching staff was very helpful in pinpointing the parts of my game that needed work, while the team made me feel at home. I view myself as a two-way center, who focuses on face-offs and defensive aspects of the game, while contributing offensively when I can,” he said.

Jarrett Burton and the Wheeling Nailers will begin the 2014-15 regular season on Saturday, October 18th at 7:35, when the Reading Royals visit WesBanco Arena.

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PensFans4Ever Proud To Be Nominated For 2nd Consecutive NEPA BOTY Run

Whats that you say you didn’t hear? PensFans4Ever has been nominated for NEPA’s BOTY (Blog Of The Year) for the second consecutive year and could not be more proud. Now we need you our readers to come out and vote for us. Voting opens September 22 and runs through September 28 2014 we will post a link when the voting opens.

5 Categories • 5 Weeks • 5 Top Blogs
These red carpet awards will be delivered at NEPA BlogCon October 11 Come on and vote, you know you want to.

Marking its third consecutive year, NEPA BlogCon, the region’s only blogging and social media conference, will be held October 11, 2014. Having received overwhelmingly positive feedback from sold-out audiences in past years, NEPA BlogCon will make its return this fall at Misericordia University, with a new format, many new presenters, and a new cause.

NEPA BlogCon is designed to bring together bloggers of all experience levels, as well as those interested in marketing, social media, and communicating through the internet. It’s also an excellent event for marketers, small business owners, and students, with tracks focusing on marketing, technology, and blogging for business.

The conference will include beginner and advanced sessions on topics including social media in sports marketing, finding your photographer’s voice, using Facebook to grow your business, blog monetization, brand building, and getting started with YouTube. Featured speakers include Brian Coe of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, Frances Croke Page of the PureFoodsProject, Danielle Fleming of NOTE Fragrances, Him Cheney of Uncovering PA, and internationally-acclaimed blogger and non-profit founder, Shane Burcaw of Laughing at My Nightmare.

Last year, NEPA BlogCon drew more than 125 local bloggers, technology influencers, students, and marketing professionals to Northeastern Pennsylvania, raising thousands of dollars to benefit Blue Chip Farms Animal Refuge. Since the event originated in 2012, the amount raised for charity totals more than $5000.

All proceeds from this year’s conference will be applied to STEM education though the launch of a regional code camp in summer 2015, for girls in fourth through sixth grades. Like NEPA BlogCon, the code camp will be held in collaboration with sponsor organization, TecBRIDGE, a regional collegial organization that collaboratively strives to create and embrace entrepreneurial opportunities with the purpose of growing technology and biotechnology wealth within Northeastern Pennsylvania.
Attendees look forward to the annual NEPA Blog of the Year (BOTY) Awards Competition leading up to the conference. Each week, blogs from selected categories will be nominated and voting will be opened for fans to vote for their favorite bloggers on a poll on the conference website blog at

Winners in each of the following categories will receive a commemorative award certificate and additional prizes at the conference; Political Blog of the Year, Fashion/Lifestyle Blog of the Year, Food Blog of the Year, Fitness/Sports Blog of the Year, and Writing/Business Blog of the Year.

Tickets are available for $15 and registration is open at

Once again, this year’s official media partner for NEPA BlogCon is WNEP-TV 16 and we’re proud to introduce Net Driven as our hospitality sponsor. Sponsorship opportunities for businesses and community organizations are still available. Visit for details.

NEPA, rock out with your blog out.
• NEPA BlogCon
• Saturday, October 11 from 9:45 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; registration opens at 9:00 a.m.
• Misericordia University – Dallas, PA
• Tickets are $15.
• Tickets can be purchased online at
• Tickets include lunch refreshments, a SWAG bag, a t-shirt, and admission to all sessions.
• All proceeds benefit a regional code camp for girls in grades 4-6, launching summer 2015

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Wheeling Nailers Want You To Decide

The Wheeling Nailers are doing something a little different this season something that you wouldn’t expect a franchise to do. The Nailers are inviting their fans to help choose a logo for the center circle on the ice at WesBanco Arena this season.

The first option (A) is the logo that was used on the ice during the 2013-14 season, featuring the traditional black and gold shield with nails, inside of a black circle, with the word “Wheeling” on the top, and the word “Nailers” on the bottom, written in white.

The second option (B) is the logo that was used on the ice during the 2012-13 season, and is also featured on the crest of the Nailers home and away jerseys. That logo is the traditional black and gold shield with nails.

The third option (C) is the logo that has yet to be used on the ice with the recent color scheme, but can be found on the windows of the Nailers office on Main Street. Once again, the traditional black and gold shield with nails is featured, with the word “Nailers” written under the logo in gold, and the word “Wheeling” written under that in gold type with a black background.

The fourth option (D) is a logo that has yet to be used in any fashion by itself, but is a part of the current logo. For this logo, the traditional black and gold shield gets removed, but the two nails remain, crossing each other in the shape of an “X.”

Fans can vote for which logo they would like via the team’s social media accounts. On Twitter, fans can “retweet” or “favorite” the one they like the best. On Facebook, fans can “like” the one they like the best.

The winning logo will be revealed on September 15th, when the ice goes into WesBanco Arena.

Opening Night for the 2014-15 regular season is just 50 days away, as the Wheeling Nailers will play host to the Reading Royals on Saturday, October 18th at 7:35.

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Nailers, Canadiens Extend Affiliation Agreement

The Wheeling Nailers announced today that they have extended their affiliation agreement with the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey League and Hamilton Bulldogs of the American Hockey League.

Wheeling enters its fifth consecutive season as the ECHL affiliate for both Montreal and Hamilton, as well as its tenth season overall with the Canadiens. Over the course of those years, seven former Nailers/Thunderbirds have made their NHL debuts with the Canadiens. In addition, a total of eight former Nailers/Thunderbirds have suited up with Montreal, including defenseman Francis Bouillon, who tallied two goals and six points in 52 games during the 2013-14 regular season.

“We are excited to extend our relationship with the Canadiens and their AHL affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs,” said Nailers Governor Don Rigby. “Montreal has placed some very talented players in Wheeling in recent seasons, and we believe that with two strong affiliations, the Nailers will be able to put a successful team on the ice in 2014-15.”

Montreal, Hamilton, and Wheeling experienced a fair amount of movement throughout the system last season. Seven different players dressed in at least one game for both the Nailers and Bulldogs during the 2013-14 campaign, including goaltender Mike Condon, who established a team record with Wheeling for most shutouts in a single season (6). Montreal and Hamilton saw 11 players appear for both teams, led by Michael Bournival, who recorded seven goals, seven assists, and 14 points during his rookie season in the NHL.

“The Montreal Canadiens are very happy to extend our affiliation with the Wheeling Nailers. The players that we have put in there in the past have done well, and we have been pleased with their development. Clark Donatelli and the Wheeling organization have been great to work with, and we believe that this year will be even better,” said Montreal Canadiens Assistant General Manager Rick Dudley.

The 2014-15 crop of future Canadiens and Bulldogs will begin their season with the Nailers on Saturday, October 18th at 7:35, when they play host to the Reading Royals at WesBanco Arena.

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WBS Penguins Announce 2014-15 Regular Season Schedule

It was released today the the WBS Penguins will open their 16th season of play at home on Saturday, October 11, when they welcome the Lehigh Valley Phantoms to the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza. The Penguins, in conjunction with the American Hockey League, released its full 2014-15 schedule this morning.

The Penguins will play a 76-game regular season schedule (38 home/38 road) featuring games against every team in the Eastern Conference. The majority of those (40 games total – 20 home/20 road) will come against East Division foes. The Penguins will also face off against clubs from the Northeast Division (20 games total – 10 home/10 road) and Atlantic Division (16 games total – 8 home/8 road).

The home opener will be the first contest for the recently relocated Phantoms, who begin play in Allentown this year after spending the past three campaigns in Glens Falls, New York. It’s somewhat of an historic meeting, as the Phantoms (then located in Philadelphia) hosted the Penguins in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s inaugural game on October 1, 1999.

The Penguins’ first road trip of the season sees the team traveling north to face the St. John’s IceCaps. The two teams faced off in the Eastern Conference Final of the 2014 Calder Cup Playoffs, with St. John’s advancing to the championship round in six games.

Thirty of the team’s 38 home contests will take place on weekend evenings or afternoons. The Penguins’ longest homestands are four games each (December 27-January 2; February 11-February 21), while the team’s longest stretch of games away from northeast Pennsylvania encompasses six contests (February22-March 8).

We will have the entire interactive schedule up as soon as we get it entered into our database.

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The Wheeling Nailers and WBS Penguins Extend Affiliation

The Wheeling Nailers, proud members of the ECHL, are excited to announce that they have extended their affiliation agreement with the Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League.

Wheeling enters its 15th consecutive season as the ECHL affiliate for both Pittsburgh and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, as well as its 16th season overall with the NHL Penguins. Over the course of those years, 13 former Nailers have made their NHL debuts with the Penguins, including forwards Adam Payerl and Zach Sill, along with defensemen Philip Samuelsson, who all accomplished that feat during the 2013-14 campaign. In addition, a total of 15 former Nailers/Thunderbirds have suited up with Pittsburgh, featuring the likes of goaltender Tomas Vokoun and forward Paul Bissonnette.

“We are thrilled to extend our relationship with the Penguins and their AHL affiliate, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins,” said Nailers Governor Don Rigby. “Pittsburgh does an excellent job of balancing the values of winning and player development on the ice, while also helping us make a valuable connection with our fans off of the ice.”

Pittsburgh, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, and Wheeling have a strong history of advancing players in their organization, and the 2013-14 season followed suit. Last year alone saw 14 different players dress in at least one game for both the Nailers and the AHL Penguins, including forward Anton Zlobin and goaltender Peter Mannino, whose large contributions helped Wilkes-Barre/Scranton reach the Eastern Conference Final. The NHL/AHL pipeline was equally busy last season, as 14 players suited up for both Pittsburgh and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, led by forward Brian Gibbons, who racked up 47 points in 69 games between the two levels.

“The Penguins are pleased to extend our relationship with the Wheeling Nailers. Penguins fans saw the importance Wheeling has within our organization last season when we had a handful of former Nailers see NHL action with us,” said Pittsburgh Penguins Associate General Manager Jason Botterill.

The 2014-15 crop of future Penguins will get an immediate taste of the Pittsburgh-Philadelphia rivalry, when the Nailers open the regular season against the Reading Royals on Saturday, October 18th at 7:35.

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