Iowa Heartlanders walloped by Toledo Walleye

The Heartlanders fell, 4-0, to the Walleye Wednesday night at Xtream Arena in Coralville. Iowa has lost all four of the games it’s played against Toledo this season.

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Gabby Drees

Heartlanders goalie Trevin Kozlowski reacts after the Walleye score a goal at a hockey game between the Iowa Heartlanders and Toledo Walleye at Xtream Arena in Coralville, Iowa, on Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021. Kozlowski allowed three goals for 36 attempts. The Walleye defeated the Heartlanders 4-0.

Jake Olson, Sports Reporter


The Iowa Heartlanders fell, 4-0, to the Toledo Walleye Wednesday night at Xtream Arena in Coralville. The game was the first of three Iowa will play at home against Toledo this week.

The Heartlanders struggled on both the offensive and defensive ends to the ice Wednesday night. The Heartlanders only fired 19 shots at the Walleye’s goal. Meanwhile, Toledo accumulated 40 shots, resulting in four goals.

“They are an experienced team,” said Iowa assistant coach Derek Damon, who is in charge of the team until head coach Gerry Fleming returns from a COVID-19-related absence. “They are a team that plays smart. They manage the puck well. We tried to make too many plays and it led to turnovers.”

The first period was the Heartlanders’ toughest, offensively. Iowa only shot the puck at Toledo’s net three times during the frame.

On the game, the Heartlanders never registered more than nine shots in a period. Iowa put up seven and nine shots on goal in the second and third stanzas, respectively.

Goalkeeper Trevin Kozlowski kept Iowa in the game in the first period, blocking 12 of Toledo’s 13 shots. Eventually, Kozlowski just couldn’t keep up with the Walleye’s attack, surrendering one goal in the second period and two in the third.

“It wasn’t our best effort tonight,” Damon said. “Tonight, we didn’t come out with the effort we needed. It’s especially tough to lose in your own place.”

BIG PICTURE

The Heartlanders are 4-0 this season against the ECHL Central Division-leading Walleye. In the four games it’s played against Toledo, Iowa has been outscored 30-5.

Iowa is in last place in the ECHL Central Division standings with a 5-12 overall record — not counting the one shootout and two overtime losses the Heartlanders have suffered this season.

KOZLOWSKI KEEPS HEARTLANDERS AFLOAT

Kozlowski racked up 36 saves Wednesday evening. He deflected all but four of the shots Toledo took on his goal.

Kozlowski has allowed just 36 goals this season, piling up a whopping 293 saves in the process. His save percentage is currently 89.1.

UP NEXT

The Heartlanders will take on the Walleye again on both Friday and Saturday night. Iowa’s last two games of the week feature 7 p.m. start times.

After Saturday’s game, the Heartlanders will have a six-day break before they travel to Kansas City Dec. 17 to take on the Mavericks at 7:05 p.m.

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