Fort Wayne, Ind. – For the second consecutive outing, the IceMen scored the game’s first goal, but were unable to maintain the lead as they allowed four unanswered goals to the Komets.
IceMen Defenseman Austin Madaisky scored first for Evansville on the power play as Left Winger Josh Beaulieu effectively screened Ft. Wayne Goaltender Ken Reiter. The tally came 9:29 into the first period and was assisted by Centers Todd Robinson and Nathan Moon. Madaisky’s goal was his first on the season.
Evansville Goaltender Paul Karpowich fought off a flurry of point-blank shots off of IceMen turnovers in the first period. He prevailed superb and saved all 12 Komets shots in the opening frame.
Unyielding pressure continued in the second period for Ft. Wayne as Left Winger Josh Brittain tied the game at the 4:43 mark of the middle frame. Brittain finished the game with two goals and one assist, and accumulated a +4 rating. He was voted the game’s first star.
Ft. Wayne Right Winger Brandon Marino continued his strong play against the IceMen on Friday night. Marino tallied his ninth point in three games versus Evansville this season when he scored a tie-breaking goal 11:16 into the second period. Like Brittain, Marino also finished a +4 rating for the game.
Scoring the third straight Komets goal was Right Winger Jean-Michel Rizk at the 6:42 point of the third period. The goal came as the IceMen were on the power play and was assisted by Defenseman Daniel Nycholat. Rizk’s goal scored a man down resulted in the game winner for Ft. Wayne. Evansville has now given up four short-handed goals on the season.
Clinging to a 3-1 third period lead, the Komets added a fourth marker to the board when Center Colin Chaulk scored his first goal of the season. Assisting on Chaulk’s goal was Brittain, who would tally Ft. Wayne’s fifth and final goal of the game with :03 remaining in the final stanza. Brittain’s empty-net goal was assisted by Chaulk.
Making things interesting for Evansville prior to the empty-net goal by Brittain was Defenseman Brent Regner, who successfully recorded his first IceMen goal. The goal was scored 9:31 into the third period and was assisted by Center Jason Dale and Right Winger Trent Vogelhuber.
Evansville was presented a chance to gain on Ft. Wayne with 7:40 remaining in the game when Ritz was penalized for a hooking minor. The man advantage came and went, however, as the Komets prevailed in a critical penalty-killing effort.
The IceMen power play went 1-for-4 on the game, accumulating to a success rate of .250 percent. Evansville’s penalty kill was flawless, halting all four Ft. Wayne man-advantage opportunities.
The winning goaltender was Ft. Wayne’s Reiter, who saved 22-of-24 shots faced. He finished the game with a .916 save percentage.
The losing goaltender was Evansville’s Karpowich, who racked up a .878 save percentage after stopping 29-of-33 shots.
With the victory, Ft. Wayne has won five games in a row and maintain their second place status in the North Division behind the undefeated Cincinnati Cyclones.
Evansville will return home on Saturday night, Nov. 10, to face the South Carolina Stingrays for the first time. The puck is scheduled to drop at the Ford Center at 7:15 p.m.