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The Journal Gazette

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Colin Mulvey, of the Komets, takes a shot on goal in the first period of Friday night's game against the Indy Fuel at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Will Weber, of the Komets, brings the puck down the ice in the first period of Friday night's game against the Indy Fuel at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Trevor Cheek slides into Indy's goalie Jake Hildebrand in the first period of Friday night's game at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Curtis Leonard looks for a shot on the goal in the first period of Friday night's game against the Indy Fuel at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Jamie Schaafsma congratulates Jason Binkley on the team's first goal of Friday night's game against Indy Fuel in the first period at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Indy's Kenny Ryan tries to block Komet's Trevor Cheek from passing the puck in the first period of Friday night's game at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Kyle Thomas looks for a shot on goal in the first period of Friday night's game against the Indy Fuel at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Mike Embach takes a shot on goal in the first period of Friday night's game against Indy Fuel at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Colin Mulvey, of the Komets, fights to get by from Indy's Brandon Martell in the first period of Friday night's game at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Travis Ewanyk takes a shot on Indy's goal in the first period of Friday night's game at the Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Mike Cazzola, of the Komets, stops just shy of Indy's goalie Jake Hildebrand in the first period of Friday night's game at the Coliseum.

Friday, February 10, 2017 8:30 pm

Newcomers shine in Komets' OT victory

Justin A. Cohn | The Journal Gazette

For the third straight game, the Komets tallied a season high for shots on goal. And did they ever need all 59 shots, as they recovered from an early three-goal deficit to defeat the Western Conference-worst Indy Fuel 5-4 at Memorial Coliseum.

In his first game with the Komets, Colin Mulvey netted the winning shot from the left circle after another newcomer, Travis Ewanyk, intercepted a clearing attempt in the 3-on-3 overtime.

Fort Wayne is 5-0-0 against Indy this season. The Komets have won five of their last six games.

The fans – attendance was announced at 7,516 – were irate after a potential game-tying goal by Trevor Cheek was waved off with 6:26 remaining because referee Mike Sheehan ruled Ewanyk had interfered with goaltender Jake Hildebrand.

But Cheek atoned with 33 seconds left in regulation on a power-play goal – the Komets had goalie Garrett Bartus pulled for a 5-on-3 advantage – after Kyle Thomas set him up with a pass from behind the net.

The Komets scored on 2 of 10 power plays. Indy, which totaled 26 shots, was 0 for 2.

It was the second game back for Komets goaltender Pat Nagle, who had missed 37 straight games because of a high ankle sprain, but it didn’t go as well as his Feb. 3 return, when he had 34 saves in a 4-3 victory over the Rapid City Rush.

The Fuel scored twice on its first three shots, getting a Josh Shalla goal at the end of a 2-on-1 rush 2:47 into the first period and an Alex Wideman wraparound goal at 3:15. Tyler Barnes made it 3-0 off a rebound at 4:56, on Indy’s sixth shot, and Nagle was promptly replaced by Bartus, who stopped 26 shots in Fort Wayne’s previous game, a 6-4 victory at Indianapolis on Saturday.

With Raphael Corriveau in the penalty box for interference, Fort Wayne’s Jason Binkley netted a power-play goal at 8:59, cutting the Indy lead to 3-1. Fort Wayne wound up outshooting the Fuel 20-10.

In the midst of the home-and-home series, much had changed with the roster of the Komets: they traded forward Brady Vail to Idaho for forwards Ewanyk and Colin Mulvey, got back Cheek from Tucson of the higher-level American Hockey League and released forward Devin Mantha and goalie P.J. Musico.

With Shawn Szydlowski still in the AHL with Cleveland and Bobby Shea with Rochester, Cheek, Ewanyk and Mulvey were on the ice for the Komets and helped them tally 34 of 41 shots after falling behind by three goals. Captain Jamie Schaafsma’s goal 13:46 into the second period, on his third effort from just outside the crease, cut Indy’s lead to 3-2.

The Fuel regained a two-goal lead 1:32 into the third period, when Bryn Chyzyk netted a shot from the right circle at the end of a 2-on-2 rush, but Fort Wayne’s Curtis Leonard answered with a shot from the top of the left circle at 9:40.

The Komets play Saturday at Cincinnati and Sunday at Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Notes: Shalla has seven goals and nine points in five games against the Komets this season. … The Komets played without Gabriel Desjardins, Brett Perlini, Gabriel Beaupre and Kyle Follmer.