BRAMPTON, ON – Last season the Beast got their first win versus the Wheeling Nailers, in Wheeling. Coming into this week 0-4-1, the Beast were hoping to win their first of this season against the same Nailers team. There were two chances this week before they head out of town.
Game 6: October 27 vs. Wheeling Nailers
Many Beast fans walked into Powerade Centre thinking Friday night would be the night the Beast would finally put up that first ‘W’ of the season. They’ve played the Nailers before and won (6-5-0 last season). The first several minutes of play reflected this as the Beast kept the pressure on the Nailers in their end for the first five shots of the game.
When the Nailers finally found the net, it was with two easy shots. A lot of the play for the first two periods ended up being from one end to the other. Eventually, Garrett Meurs eased the puck past Marcus Hogberg to open the scoring just before the halfway mark of the first period.
Almost 20 seconds later the crowd was stunned by a hooking call on Hunter Fejes so soon after the Nailers had scored. This lead to some nice set plays and eventually Luc-Olivier Blain’s first goal of the season, scored as he was being taken down. The first period ended in a tight 3 to 2 game with the lead being with the Nailers, and the Beast going into the dressing room with 1:50 left on Matt Petgrave’s slashing call.
When the second period started, the Beast again came to play as they were in the Nailers end again for most of their penalty kill. The Beast were still in this game until Kenny Ryan scored his first of the night with seconds left on the Scott Jacklin’s second penalty of the night.
Deep in the period, Ryan found his way past Hogberg for the second time in the period to give the Nailers a 5-2 lead and the chants of “Change the Goalie” and “We Want Dags” started up. Interestingly, it was Michael McNiven backing up Hogberg as Andrew D’Agostini was not dressed for the game. The crowd went bonkers when less than two minutes later Reid Gardiner put an easy one behind Hogberg with 36.6 seconds left on the clock. To add to the noise, Dan Milan was given a charging call with less than four seconds left in the period.
As a surprise to no one, McNiven started the third period in the net. To say that McNiven did better than Hogberg would not be fair. The Beast came out in the third to play the entire 20 minutes like they did the first two minutes of the game.
As a result, McNiven only had to make three saves in the entire period. The Beast hammered Sean Maguire with a game-high 18 shots that period and put three of them into the net, including a beauty from Petgrave as he got the initial shot and put his rebound into the net. With over six minutes to play in the third and no power plays, the Beast put the pressure on, including going 6-on-5 for the last two minutes, but could not get the tying goal.
In the end, the first-period difference lasted to the end of the game. While most of the crowd stayed for the whole game, those that left after a terrible second period missed the best period of Beast hockey this season. This night was not the night. The beast did not finally put up that first ‘W’ of the season.
Score: Nailers 6 – Beast 5
Shots: Nailers 34 –Beast 44
Penalties: Nailers 5 – Beast 4
Nailers goals were scored by Jeremy Beirnes (1), Jake Bolton (1), Gardiner (1), Meurs (1) and Ryan (2). Assists came from Derek Army (2), Riley Bourbonnais (1), Cam Brown (2), Fejes (1), Dalton Reum (1), Ryan (1), Nick Sorkin (2), Zach Tolkinen (1) and Cody Wydo (1).
Beast goals were scored by Blain (1), Kevin Dufour (1), Chris Leveille (1), Brandon Marino (1) and Petgrave (1). Assists came from Blain (1), Willie Corrin (3), Dufour (1), Brandon MacLean (1), Leveille (1), Petgrave (1) and Reggie Traccitto (1).
Game 7: October 29 vs. Wheeling Nailers
Friday night was not the night, but perhaps Sunday Funday was the afternoon! The game started with a whimper. Both teams seemed a little sleepy and slow – a far cry from the pace from two nights earlier. It took more than two minutes before the first shot on net, and when the first shots came, they were easy ones for both goalies. In the end, it was a hard hit from Marino that got things started for both teams, as he used his whole 185-pound frame to send the defender into the boards. That sent Marino to the box for two minutes for roughing. Once the action started, there were very few times either team stopped to breathe, and the period ended in a hard fought scoreless game.
With Petgrave going off late in the first for slashing, the Nailers started with a short power play and Ryan scored the first of the night just after the power play had ended. While both teams were playing 4-on-4 (Milan off from slashing and Thomas Ebbing off for cross-checking,) Ryan scored his second goal of the night and his fourth in two games. Up went the Nailers 2-0 and the crowd started to think the losing streak would continue.
With just over five minutes to play in the second, Petgrave scored his second goal in as many nights as he sunk the puck in the back of the net on passes from Jacklin and the newly acquired Nathan Todd. A little over two minutes later and the Nailers were up 3-1 off a nice goal from Gardiner, which is how it stayed for the last three minutes of the period. Unlike Friday, the fans were not thrilled to start the third down two goals, but they did recall the three-goal third period from Friday.
When the puck dropped for the third period, the excitement was in the air after having witnessed a 30-shot second period. The Beast and the Nailers came out flying, but the Beast took the edge and that lead to Meurs getting a slashing call, which Dufour used to get the Beast within one goal.
Two minutes later Cody Donaghey tied the game and crowd went nuts. Realizing that there was still a lot of hockey left, the Beast kept on the pressure, as did the Nailers and two minutes later Traccitto gave the Beast their first lead of the game. Up 4-3, the Meurs and Ebbing feud moved into high gear as they spared for a time and Ebbing came out the winner, sending both to the box for five minutes to think about things. Traccitto got slashing call one minute later, and a short time later Wydo ended up in their box for interference. Still not done, Petgrave got two minutes for boarding and there were now 5 in the boxes and a 4-on-3 game on the ice. When Wydo’s penalty ended, he flew into the play and got the Nailers’ tying goal while Petgrave was still in the box, and six minutes were left in the game.
Once back to full strength, the Beast took over for the next three minutes when Dufour got his second of the night and the eventual game-winning goal. The Nailers pushed to even the score again, but even with their net empty for the last 1:12, they only managed to get 5 shots on goal the entire period.
The Beast got their first win of the season. Today was the day.
Score: Nailers 4 – Beast 5
Shots: Nailers 24 – Beast 44
Penalties: Nailers 5 – Beast 7
Nailers goals were scored by Gardiner (1), Ryan (2) and Wydo (1). Assists came from Bolton (1), Brown (1), Fejes (1), Danny Fick (1), Sorkin (2) and Wydo (2).
Beast goals were scored by Donaghey (1), Dufour (2), Petgrave (1) and Traccitto (1). Assists came from Blain (1), Ebbing (1), Jacklin (3), Marino (1), Petgrave (1), Todd (1) and Traccitto (1).
This Week in Player Movement
October 24: Stefan Fournier (F) suspended for five games
October 25: Scott Jacklin (F) signed contract and added to active roster
October 25: Matt Petgrave (D) placed on reserve
October 25: Mike Folkes (D) placed on reserve
October 25: Tyson Wilson (D) placed on injured reserve (effective October 15)
October 26: Nathan Todd (F) claimed on waivers from Atlanta
October 26: Jordan Murray (D) assigned by Belleville
October 26: Thomas Ebbing (F) recalled by Laval
October 27: Matt Petgrave (D) activated from reserve
October 27: Nathan Todd (F) added to the roster and placed on reserve
October 28: Mitch Zion (F) was released/placed on waivers
October 28: Mark Bennett (F) was released/placed on waivers
October 28: Bryan Cameron (F) signed contract and added to active roster
October 28: Mike Folkes (D) activated from reserve
October 28: Brandon MacLean (F) placed on reserve
October 29: Thomas Ebbing (F) assigned by Laval
October 29: Nathan Todd (F) activated from reserve
October 29: Paul Cianfrini (D) placed on reserve
October 29: Marcus Hogberg (G) recalled to Belleville by Ottawa
October 30: Thomas Ebbing (F) recalled by Laval
This Week’s Slate
The Beast are on the road for a trio of games in Rapid City.
November 1: Brampton Beast vs. Rapid City Rush
November 3: Brampton Beast vs. Rapid City Rush
November 4: Brampton Beast vs. Rapid City Rush