01/06/2016 9:05 AM
The Brampton Beast have enjoyed a lighter schedule over the holiday season last week and played both their last game of 2015 and their first game of 2016 in Wheeling against the Nailers.
Thursday, December 31 @ Wheeling Nailers
Result: 4-3 OTW
The Wheeling Nailers grabbed two goals in the third period to force the game to overtime, but Brampton Beast captain Brandon Marino indeed made it a Happy New Year for the Beast after netting one past Franky Palazzese, winning the game 4-3 at the WesBanco Arena on Thursday night.
Scott Howes opened the scoring on this special New Years Eve game against the Nailers on the power play with some help from Luke Pither and Brandon Marino.
The goal was Howes’ eleventh goal this season, making him the Beast’s top goal scorer going into 2016.
Matia Marcantuoni recorded his first of the game after the puck hit the skate of Beast starting goaltender Eddie Pasquale and slid into the net, tying it up just before the end of the period.
The second period was all Beast. Jordan Henry scored his second of the season after Angelo Miceli set him up to fire a rocket on the top shelf of Palazzese to give the Beast a 2-1 lead.
Jeff Brown extended the lead with under four minutes left in the period after finding the puck in a crowded Nailers zone and slotting it home.
The Nailers fought hard and came back in the third period after Anton Zlobin and Andrew Cerretani, who scored his first professional goal on his pro debut, levelled the game to give the Nailers some hope in overtime.
Both teams had some great chances in the extra frame, but it was Captain Brandon Marino who would win it for the Beast, grabbing the puck off a Nailers rebound to get on a breakaway and net his ninth goal of the season.
Netminder Eddie Pasquale had another great night for the Beast making 31 saves, while the Nailers’ Franky Palazzese made 22 saves.
Saturday, January 2 @ Wheeling Nailers
Result: 5-1 L
Jeff Brown scored late in the third period but Wheeling Nailers goaltender Franky Palazzese stole the show down the stretch and kicked out the remainder of the 27 shots he faced as the Nailers defeated the Brampton Beast 5-1 at WesBanco Arena in Wheeling on Saturday night.
Jarrett Burton led the way for Wheeling with two goals and an assist, while Connor Leen chipped in with a goal and an assist as the Nailers snapped the Beast’s two-game winning streak and gave the Beast their first loss of 2016.
The first period was an evenly-contested frame, with Wheeling leading 10-9 on the shot clock. The Nailers took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission as Burton scored his twelfth goal of the season at 7:04.
Burton didn’t waste much time earning his second goal of the contest as he pushed Wheeling’s lead to 2-0 by the 4:35 mark of the second period.
The Beast were unable to capitalize on a pair of power plays in the first half of the second period. Tim Hall pushed the Nailers’ lead to 3-0 shortly thereafter with his first goal of the season at 11:42.
The Beast stormed out in the third period looking to get back into the game, but their strong play resulted a pair of penalties taken just over a minute apart near the midway point of the third period.
The Nailers made the Beast pay as Anton Zlobin and Connor Leen scored a pair of power play goals just 32 seconds apart at 8:12 and 8:44, pushing the Nailers lead to 5-0.
Leen’s goal spelled the end of the night for Beast starter Eddie Pasquale, who would finish the game with 24 saves in 48:41 of ice time.
Andy Iles would finish the game between the pipes for the Beast and stopped all four shots he faced.
Jeff Brown lit the lamp for his sixth goal of the season less than a minute after the fifth Wheeling goal, but Nailers goaltender Palazzese didn’t falter down the stretch and made eight third period saves to help his club to victory.
The Beast and the Kalamazoo Wings will grow to know each other well during this upcoming series, as these two teams will play three games in three days starting on Friday, January 8 in Kalamazoo and ending with a pair of games at the Powerade Centre on Saturday, January 9 and Sunday, January 10.