|Saturday night’s game between the Wheeling Nailers and Greenville Road Warriors featured loads of emotion and a bit of controversy, and in the end, both teams came away with at least one point. Unfortunately for the Nailers, it was Greenville who got the bonus point, as Mike Banwell’s goal from the left wing wall at 2:31 of overtime was the difference in a 4-3 final score at WesBanco Arena.
The teams battled to a scoreless first period, before exploding to combine for five goals in the middle frame. Emerson Clark put the Road Warriors on the board first at the 5:29 mark, when he potted the rebound of Mike Banwell’s initial shot from the left point. Wheeling had a quick answer, needing just 42 seconds to square the game at one. Three seconds into a power play, Jean-Sebastien Dea found himself open on the left side of the slot, where he roofed a wrist shot into the top-right corner of the cage. Derek Army followed up that tally 1:29 later, slamming in the rebound of Dea’s chance from the left side of the blueline. Domenic Alberga pinballed in a tying goal for Greenville with 4:32 remaining, which appeared to send the game to intermission even. However, as the clock was ticking down, Vinny Saponari trickled a puck over the line for a play which was ruled a goal, leading to Clark Donatelli’s third career ejection and second this season.
Sticking up for their head coach, the Nailers played a spirited third period, outshooting the Road Warriors, 14-6, while netting the tying goal. That came from Jarrett Burton, who tipped in Riley Brace’s pass from along the right side of the goal line.
Despite the comeback, the game didn’t have a happy ending for the home team, as Banwell flicked in a screened shot from the outer edge of the left circle, lifting the Road Warriors to the 4-3 win.
Jason Missiaen recorded the win for Greenville, making 27 saves on 30 shots. Eric Hartzell suffered the overtime defeat, stopping 23 of the 27 shots he faced.
The Nailers and Road Warriors will meet again on Sunday afternoon at 4:05.
Sunday, March 1st wraps up the weekend at 4:05 against the Road Warriors on a Family Funday with $5 kids tickets, Oglebay Good Zoo Day, and a post game skate with the team. That day will also be the annual Pucks & Paws Day, when fans are invited to bring their dogs and cats to the game.
Tuesday, March 3rd will be the make-up game for the postponed contest from February 16th against the Jackals. Face-off is scheduled for 7:05, and fans will be able to purchase a hot dog and soda combo for $5.
Wheeling Nailers 2015-16 season tickets, as well as flex tickets, group tickets and single-game tickets for 2014-15 are on sale now. For more information, call 304-234-GOAL or visit wheelingnailers.com.