KALAMAZOO, MI - After posting the game-winning goal in last night's overtime win against Indy, Ryan Cox sealed the deal once more in tonight's 3-1 victory over Kalamazoo to give Toledo their 18th consecutive win.
Toledo traveled up to Kalamazoo for the second weekend in a row to play their first of two final road games this season, both of which are against the Wings. Last Friday, the Walleye secured their sixth straight win over the K-Wings to extend their season record to 7-3-1 with three games remaining between the teams.
In the opening half of tonight's first period, Toledo outshot Kalamazoo by a count of 7-2. However, the Wings were the first to get on the board thanks to Ben Copeland at the 14:22 mark. Under two minutes later, Thomas Ebbing responded, sending the puck past the right pad of Kalamazoo netminder Pavel Cajan to make it a tie game. John Albert and Charlie Curti picked up the assists on the equalizer. Toledo more than doubled Kalamazoo's seven shots in the opening period with 15.
The first penalty of the night went to Kalamazoo's Justin Murray for roughing halfway through the seventh minute of period two. The K-Wings came away with the penalty kill, but Ryan Cox put the Walleye ahead four minutes later as he tipped Gordi Myer's shot from outside the right circle. Brandon Hawkins grabbed the second assist on the game-winner.
Another Wings penalty came in the middle period, a tripping call against Franco Sproviero late in the 18th minute. With just 11 seconds gone in the power play, Charlie Curti extended the Walleye lead with a one-timer from Brandon Hawkins and Gordi Myer. Despite being outshot 18-12 in the second period, Toledo headed into the final third leading 3-1.
In the final 20 minutes of play, the shot count was significantly lower for both teams. The K-Wings got their first power play at 8:31 as Sam Craggs headed to the Toledo box with a hooking minor. Despite the Wings racking up seven shots in the latter half of the final period, Sebastian Cossa remained a brick wall in the Walleye net up until the end.
- The Walleye success only continued tonight with the team's 18th consecutive win. Toledo will now go in the ECHL history books with the second-longest winning streak behind South Carolina's 23-game stint set back in the 2014-15 season.
- With a road record of 26-6-3 this season, the Walleye have tied the league's all-time road winning record. To add to the success, Toledo now holds the second-longest road winning streak in ECHL history with 11 straight.
- Sebastian Cossa secured his tenth straight win in the Toledo net tonight, saving 32 of Kalamazoo's 33 shots.
- Ryan Cox capped off his professional debut weekend with another game-winner tonight. With a goal and an assist last night in Indy, the rookie forward picked up his first three pro points over the weekend.
- Brandon Hawkins extended his team points lead to 70 and his point streak to 15 games with a pair of assists tonight. The forward has established a new Walleye record, surpassing teammate TJ Hensick's 14-game point streak that was set in the 2018-19 season.
Three Stars Sponsored by Local 245:
1) TOL - R. Cox (1G)
2) TOL - C. Curti (1G, 1A)
3) TOL - S. Cossa (32 SVS)
The home stretch kicks off on Friday as Toledo hosts Reading for the one and only time this season at 7:15 p.m.