Glens Falls, NY – Alex Wall’s game-winning goal with just 16 seconds left overtime gave the Adirondack Thunder a thrilling come from behind 5-4 victory over the Wheeling Nailers on Saturday evening at the Glens Falls Civic Center.
The visitors opened the scoring with a pair of first period goals to open up a 2-0 advantage. First, after Adirondack turned the puck over deep in its own zone, the Nailers pounced as Kale Kerbashian stole the puck and fed Currier in the high slot, where his shot beat screened Adirondack netminder J.P. Anderson. Wheeling doubled its advantage with a power-play goal with less than 20 seconds to play in the opening period. After controlling the puck in the offensive zone, defenseman Mike Krieg sent a shot from the left point that went through traffic and into the back of the net for his third tally of the season.
Wheeling collected the second period’s lone goal as well as defenseman Kevin Schulze fired home from the point to push his team ahead 3-0. While on the man advantage, the Nailers took advantage of a failed clearance and the puck made its way to Schulze at the point, where he fired through traffic for his team’s third of the evening. Kerbashian and Nick Sorkin collected the assists on the play, Sorkin’s 35th of the season.
Out of the intermission, Adirondack scored twice in the first eight minutes of the third period to cut their deficit to a single goal. First, just 80 seconds into the third period, Thunder captain Peter MacArthur collected a pass from Brian Ward and fired home from close range for his 21st goal of the season, tying him for the team lead. Forward Gunnar Hughes brought the Thunder a step closer at the 7:56 mark as he redirected home a Roman Dyukov shot from the point for his 11th goal of the season. Dyukov and Ward collected the helpers on the play, Ward’s second of the evening.
After Adirondack killed a five-minute major penalty assessed to Dennis Kravchenko, they tied the game with less than five minutes remaining in the third period. Following a broken play in front of Wheeling netminder Sean McGuire, the puck fell to defenseman turned forward Conor Riley, who swatted it into the back of the net for his sixth tally of the season. Riley’s goal was assisted by Austin Orszulak and Cullen Bradshaw, the first point of Orszulak’s professional career.
With less than a minute to play, Adirondack surged to its first lead of the evening, courtesy of Bradshaw’s third goal of the season. MacArthur fed a streaking Bradshaw down the left wing, where the Adirondack centerman skated in on McGuire and fired home through the five hole for the go-ahead tally. The goal was assisted by MacArthur and defenseman Alex Wall, MacArthur’s 35th assist of the season.
Wheeling would not go away, however, as they knotted the game at four with less than 20 seconds to play in regulation. Forward Christian Hilbrich collected a pass from Cody Wydo, pulled a move at the top of the right-hand circle and fired a shot past Anderson to send the game into overtime. Hilbrich’s goal was his 14th of the season while Wydo had the lone assist on the play, his 23rd helper of the season.
After a thrilling overtime period, the Thunder won the game with just 16 seconds remaining as Wall scored for the second time in as many nights. With the puck in the corner, Ward drove to the net and slid the puck to a streaking Wall, who slotted it past McGuire for his sixth tally of the season. Ward and forward James Henry collected the assists on the play, Ward’s third of the evening.
With the victory, Adirondack improves to 32-20-6-4 on the season and sit five points clear of Wheeling for the fourth and final playoff spot in the North Division with a game in hand.
The Thunder are back in action tomorrow evening as they host the Atlanta Gladiators at the Glens Falls Civic Center for the first time in franchise history. Adirondack Thunder individual and group ticket packages are also available for just $13 per t-icket in addition to new Thunder mini-packs, consisting of four tickets and a gift card to a local restaurant for just $65. Call 518-480-3355 x1 or visit ECHLThunder.com/tickets to customize a plan and reserve your seat locations today.
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