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A good win, quirky day

KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- First of all, I hope whomever conceptualized this doubleheader at Wings Stadium is forced to watch both games and see the stands.

By having the professional game between the Komets and Kalamazoo Wings at 3 p.m., followed by the North American Hockey League junior game between Kalamazoo and Port Huron, the folks here cost themselves a bunch of money, I'd wager.

I'm sure at least 400 more Fort Wayne would have come for a night game.

As it was, there were about 300 Fort Wayne fans among the annouced crowd of 1,969, who saw a 6-5 victory by the Komets.

(The NAHL game is close to starting and there's about 140 people, including a handful of Fort Wayne fans.)

Here's the deal with Komets goalie Marco Cousineau, who stopped 33 of 37 shots before leaving with 6:50 to play: He has an injured groin and Komets coach Al Sims fears it is serious.

The Komets are already planning to call up Gerry Festa from Dayton of the Federal Hockey League, if they can't get Kenny Reiter back from Bridgeport of the American Hockey League before Wednesday morning's game at Toledo, Ohio. (Yes, you read that correctly.)

Festa is 2-1-0 with a 2.34 goals-against average and a .943 save percentage for the Demonz. (Yes, you read that correctly, too.)

This is quirky, by allowing a goal in the waning minutes, Komets goalie Charlie Effinger actually earned himself the victory. He stopped 3 of 4 shots but gave one up with five seconds remaining, making him the goalie of record. I'd say he owes Cousineau and beer for that.

The Komets got a hat trick from Thomas Beauregard -- including an empty netter -- and he has four goals in his first two games with Fort Wayne.

“This feels good. Especially sitting there, after being released, this was a good weekend to experience,” said Beauregard, the brother of former Komets star David Beauregard. “I’m still getting back into game shape. I was sitting at home for a week and waiting for a phone call. I had a good week of practice, but I’m still not there yet and I’m glad everything went well.”

The Komets also got goals from Josh Brittain, Daniel Maggio and Jean-Michel Rizk.

After averaging 2.17 goals over their first six games, the Komets have 10 in their last two.

They are also on their first three-game winning streak of the season.

Well, I'm going to get to work on the video recap and enjoy my first NAHL game since 1992.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at jcohn@jg.net.

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