ECHL Game Recap: Toledo Walleye vs. Indy Fuel 01/14/2024

Credit: Toledo Walleye

The Toledo Walleye hosted the Indy Fuel on the evening of Sunday, January 14, 2024. The Walleye came into last night’s contest as one of the top teams in the entire league, while the Fuel were aiming to rise in the standings with a big win. The game was part of Warner Bros. weekend, which featured the Walleye wearing Flinstones jerseys and a CatTrick squishy giveaway. Toledo held a winning record against Indy, claiming 13 wins in 21 games, outscoring the opposition 76-56.

The Toledo Walleye started Jan Bednar between the pipes, while the Fuel started Zach Driscoll in net. Indy’s Bryan Lemos got the Fuel’s first two shots on goal just 1:15 into the game but was denied by Bednar both times. Indy’s Christopher Cameron was whistled for the game’s first penalty, a holding the stick minor at 9:12, but the Walleye killed off the penalty. The period would end in a scoreless tie, with Indy holding a 10-5 shot advantage.

Indy would get on the board first as Andrew Bellant scored his seventh goal of the season, with assists to Matus Spodniak and Jon Martin. Toledo would tie this game up at one as Riley Sawchuk slipped one past Driscoll, his ninth of the season, and assists went to Mitchell Lewandowski and Alexandre Doucet. The momentum would quickly swing back to the Fuel as they would grab the lead again on a goal by Brandon Schultz, his third goal of the season, with Lemos getting the lone assist. The visitors would have the lead in goals and shots as the Fuel would be up 2-1 with a shot advantage of 21-14.

The third period would have plenty of fireworks offensively as the Walleye exploded. The goaltenders remained sharp in the first half of the period as both teams played safe hockey. Toledo would get the tying goal on another Sawchuk goal, his tenth of the season, at 10:53, as Lewandowski and Doucet would again get the assists. The Walleye would grab their first lead of the game 0:55 seconds later on a goal by Orrin Centazzo, his 15th of the season, with Colin Theisen assisting. Toledo would add another, their third in less than two minutes, when Doucet would score his seventh on the season, Sawchuk and Lewandowski assisting at 11:21.

The Indy Fuel would get one back as Josh Maniscalco would score his third of the season and Martin grabbing another assist. Toledo would put another one past Driscoll as Matt Anderson scored his seventh into an empty net as Sam Craggs and Grant Gabriele assisted. This would conclude the scoring on this wild Sunday afternoon game as the toledo Walleye would defeat the Indy Fuel 5-3, yet the shots were in favor of Indy, 29-22. Bednar was tremendous between the pipes, stopping 26 of 29, while Driscoll stopped 17 of 21 for the Fuel.

The Walleye are now 24-6-2-3 for 51 points and remain in first place in the Central Division of the Western Conference. They improved to 10-4-1-3 at home this season and 7-2-1-1 in their last 11 games. Toledo’s next game is this Friday, January 19, 2024, on the road against the Cincinnati Cyclones at the Heritage Bank Center at 7:35.

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