WICHITA, Kan. – Goaltender Nick Boucher knew there would be times fatigue would hit his teammates and he’d have to save them during the President’s Cup finals against Wichita.
He did it in Game 1 Saturday with a flurry of saves in the third period of a tied game, and he saved them again early in Sunday’s Game 2, a 6-3 victory that gave Fort Wayne a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.
It’s been like that all of the games in the playoffs. You’re going to have ebbs and flows in the games, just like in the series, Boucher said.
There’s so much skill on that (Wichita) team, you’re not going to be able to contain them all game. They’re going to get their chances. You just have to limit some of those grade-A chances and hopefully make my life a little easier.
Boucher has stopped 57 of 63 shots in the series. Wichita’s Adam Russo has stopped 37 of 45 and was yanked in the second period of Game 2.
(Boucher) is the rock of our team, said Komets forward Chris Auger, who has four goals in the series. He’s been doing it all year, and I’ve come to expect it from him.
The Komets had only one day off after ousting Missouri in the seventh game of the Turner Conference finals Thursday, while Wichita had been off since last Monday night.
This is a (Wichita) team that’s deadly. They’ve got three lines that can score, and you can’t give them chances, said Boucher, who was selected team MVP by his teammates this season.
Bouch is playing his best hockey, like he always does in these championship runs, Fort Wayne coach Al Sims said of Boucher, who has won three titles in five years with the Komets.
He just seems to get stronger by the game and by the finals, and I think his two games here have been his two best of the playoffs.