You can be excused for thinking, Here we go again.
Everyone at Memorial Coliseum was, knowing the Komets had let seven straight home games get to overtime or a shootout and lost the last four.
So when Laredo got a third-period power play, with Fort Wayne clinging to a one-goal lead and desperate for a victory to maintain pace with Evansville, it looked like Saturday was going to be another collapse.
Not this time, thanks to Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock.
Schrock scored his second goal of the night on a breakaway to cement a 5-2 victory.
That puts me at about 2 percent on my breakaways this season, said Schrock, who has 11 goals but had been stoned on more breakaways than anyone on the team. That one felt good. Finally! I didnt do anything different. I just tried to catch him off guard. If I overhandle the puck, its probably the wrong decision and Ive been doing that on breakaways.
The Komets (37-18-7) clinched a playoff spot and took the lead in the Turner Conference with the victory. Evansville was a point back entering its Saturday night game at Rapid City, S.D.
The Komets play three of their last four at home, starting Wednesday against the Quad City Mallards.
The Komets have reached the postseason 10 times in a row and only missed the playoffs eight times in 60 season.
The Komets came into the game on a 0-1-4 run after a 4-3 loss to Laredo (25-34-3).
If any play Saturday outdid Schrocks breakaway, it was Fort Wayne goalie Gerry Festas sliding stop on a one-timer by Laredos Neil Trimm just before it.
Thats the kind of goaltending we need, Komets coach Al Sims said. We need a big save like other teams are getting against us in here. It was important to finish the way we did – strong and dominant.
Festa stopped 19 shots. Torrie Jung stopped 32 for the Bucks. Fort Wayne also got goals from Mike Vaskivuo, Chris Auger (short-handed) and Bobby Chaumont. Colin McIntosh and A.J. Hau scored for Laredo.
Notes: Since Disney on Ice is at the Coliseum on March 29 through April 1, theres a possibility the Komets will play their first two playoff games on the road, even if they have home-ice advantage. The Komets picked up defenseman Tyler Miller, who had one goal and five points in 37 games with Rapid City and Wichita.