ToledoWalleye2016

Walleye off to hot start behind high-flying offense

Led by a high-powered offense which has scored at least five goals in each of its last four games, the Toledo Walleye find themselves in a familiar position after two weeks of the 2016-17 season.

The two-time defending North Division champions, who were moved to the Central Division prior to this season, are 4-1-0 for eight points, tied with Tulsa for the division lead.

Toledo opened last week with a 5-0 win at Cincinnati on Tuesday. Kyle Bonis, last week’s ECHL Player of the Week, scored a pair of goals and added an assist, while Alden Hirschfeld added three points (1g-2a) of his own. Jake Paterson stopped all 39 shots he faced to record his third career shutout.

The Walleye wrapped up their season-opening four-game road trip on Friday with a 6-5 shootout win at Brampton. Tyler Sikura led the way offensively for Toledo with two goals and Cal Heeter earned the win in goal with 37 saves.

Toledo opened the home portion of its schedule on Saturday with a 6-5 overtime win over the Beast in front of a sell-out crowd of 8,000 at Huntington Center. Tyson Spink scored four goals, including the overtime game-winner just 28 seconds into the extra session. His twin brother Tylor picked up three assists, as did Nolan Zajac.

The Walleye are averaging 5.00 goals per game through their first five games to lead the ECHL. Toledo’s 25 goals is six more than any other team has scored through the first two weeks of the season. Five Walleye players have already scored at least three goals, with Bonis leading the way with five,  which leads the ECHL. Sikura and Tyson Spink are tied for second in the league with four goals each.

Toledo heads back on the road for a pair of games at Norfolk on Friday and Saturday.