GAME NOTES: 1/8 vs. Wheeling
Game 33 (Road Game 15)
Vs. Wheeling Nailers (16-12-2-0, 34pts)
Sunday, January 8, 2017 - 5:05pm ET
WesBanco - Wheeling, WV
Overview: The Cyclones wrap up their three-game rod trip on Sunday afternoon against the Wheeling Nailers. Cincinnati is coming into Wheeling on a three-game winning streak, after a 4-0 win in Quad City over the Mallards on Friday night.
Friday Night Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (15-13-4-0) shutout the Quad City Mallards, 4-0, on Friday night. Forward Brandon McNally led the way with a pair of goals and an assist, along with a fight to cap off the “Gordie Howe Hat-Trick”, while forward Shane Walsh added a goal and a pair of helpers, and forward Nick Huard chipped in a lone goal for the Cyclones. Goaltender Mark Visentin had a stellar night as well, stopping all 25 shots he faced to earn his first shutout of the season.
Wednesday Night Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (14-13-4-0) collected a 4-3 win over the Wichita Thunder on Wednesday night. Forward Jordan Sims netted a pair of goals, while forwards Peter LeBlanc and Colin Mulvey pitched in lone tallies for Cincinnati. The shots were tied on the night, 28-28, with goaltender Mark Visentin making 25 saves in the win.
Saturday Night Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (13-13-4-0) took down the Indy Fuel, 3-2, on Saturday night. Defenseman Troy Vance, along with forwards Jordan Sims and Brandon McNally tallied the goals for the Cyclones, who snap their two-game skid. The Cyclones outshot Fuel, 43-27 on the night, with goaltender Michael Houser steering aside 25 in the win.
Previewing Wheeling: The Nailers head into Sunday’s game winners of two in a row and four of their last six games, including a 6-0 shutout win of the League-leading Toledo Walleye on Wednesday night. The offense has come alive for the Nailers over their last two games, outscoring the opposition, 11-2 in that span. The power play has been a strength for Wheeling at home this season, as they currently rank fifth in the ECHL with a 22.2% conversion rate (16/72) on home ice. Offensively, Wheeling ranks fourth in the League with 33.37 shots per game, and are led by defenseman Kevin Schulze who has accounted for 26 points (6g, 20a) in 30 games this season. He is followed by forward Garrett Meurs (12g, 11a), an a pair of 22-point scorers in forwards Jordan Kwas (10g, 12a) and Nick Sorkin (9g, 13a). In goal, Sean Maguire leads the way with a 4-4-0-0 record along with a 2.96 goals-against average and an .896 save percentage.
Inside the Series: Sunday marks the third of four meetings between the Cyclones and Nailers this season, with both teams splitting the first two meetings by identical 2-1 decisions.
Next Game Preview: Cincinnati returns home for their lone home game in the month of January on Wednesday night against the Quad City Mallards. Cincinnati shut out Quad City, 4-0 back on Wednesday, and this will be the seventh of nine meetings this season with Cincinnati holding a 3-2-1 edge in the series.
News and Notes:
Return of the Mac: Forward Brandon McNally is currently riding a three-game point streak, accounting for three goals and three assists in that span. He recorded a three-point performance (2g, 1a) in Friday’s 4-0 win over the Quad City Mallards, and has accounted for points in seven of his nine games overall (6g, 6a).
Consistent Output: Forward Shane Walsh has been a constant on the score sheet as of late, recording four goals and six assists over his last seven games. He scored a goal and had a pair of assists in Friday’s 4-0 win over Quad City, and dished out a pair of assists in Wednesday’s 4-3 win over the Wichita Thunder. He now has four goals and nine assists in 14 games with Cincinnati since being traded from the Utah Grizzlies in late November. He also leads all ECHL rookies with 110 shots on goal this season and has registered a shot on goal in eight straight games. He has 25 shots in his last six games played (3g, 5a).
SimCity: Forward Jordan Sims posted his second straight two-point night on Wednesday, tallying a goal and an assist in Cincinnati’s 4-3 win over the Wichita Thunder. He also scored a goal and dished out an assist in Saturday’s 3-2 win over the Indy Fuel, and is now tied for sixth in team scoring with 14 points (6g, 8a).
Knodel Named to ECHL All-Star Team: The ECHL has announced the participants for the upcoming 2017 CCM/ECHL All-Star Classic, presented by I LOVE NY, and amongst the players named to the team is Cyclones defenseman Eric Knodel. The midseason exhibition will take place on Wednesday, January 18, in Glens Falls, NY, and will feature the host Adirondack Thunder against the ECHL All-Stars. A native of West Chester, PA, Knodel is fifth on the team in scoring with four goals and 11 assists through 30 games this season. He is also tied for the team lead with a plus-8 on-ice rating. The 2017 CCM/ECHL All-Star Classic, presented by I LOVE NY, will feature the host Adirondack Thunder taking on the ECHL All-Stars in a non-traditional format featuring 5-on-5, 4-on-4, and 3-on-3 play, as well as a Skills Competition (Puck Relay, Hardest Shot, Fastest Skater) to highlight the talents of both teams. The game will also air LIVE exclusively on NHL Network.
O’Donnell Signs PTO with Milwaukee: The Milwaukee Admirals, American Hockey League Affiliate (AHL) of the Cincinnati Cyclones have signed Cyclones forward Shawn O’Donnell to a Professional Tryout Agreement (PTO). O’Donnell has appeared in 17 games this season with the Cyclones and has accounted for six goals and eight assists in that time.
Cyclones Sign Nowakowski: Cincinnati Cyclones Head Coach Matt Macdonald has announced that the team has signed forward Dylan Nowakowski to a Standard Player Contract (SPC). Nowakowski returns to Cincinnati after spending the 2016 Training Camp with the Cyclones. He has appeared in 23 games this season with Huntsville Havoc of the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) where he ranks second in the League in scoring with 25 points (14g, 11a). He turned pro late in the 2015-16 season, appearing in eight games with the Havoc and accounting for a pair of goals and four assists. Prior to turning pro, The Calgary, AB native spent four season at St. Scholastica College where he skated in 110 games and totaled 40 goals and 79 assists in that span.
He’s a Brick...HOUSE!: Goaltender Michael Houser had a stellar month of December, posting a 6-2-0-0 record along with a 1.61 goals-against average and a .945 save percentage. He was charged with making 25 or more saves on six separate occasions, and allowed one goal in five of his eight games played. Currently, Houser ranks third in the ECHL with a 2.31 GAA and fourth with a .925 save percentage.
The Road Ahead: The Cyclones will be spending a lot of time on the road in the coming weeks, with 9 of the next 10 games coming away from U.S. Bank Arena. The Cyclones are 6-8-0-0 on the road this season while averaging 2.78 goals per game.
Get Ahead, Stay Ahead: The Cyclones enter Sunday with a 12-1-3 record when leading after one period and a 13-1-2 mark when leading after 40 minutes.
The 2016-17 season is underway, and the Cincinnati Cyclones want you along for the ride as they march towards another Kelly Cup Championship! 2016-17 single game tickets and packages along with group and Season Ticket Packages are available NOW! Call (513) 421-PUCK to reserve your seats. Fans can also get the latest team updates on Facebook, Twitter (@CincyCyclones), and Instagram, along with our website, www.cycloneshockey.com!