Fort Wayne's third-period surge overtakes Fuel
Captain Michael Neal scores both Indy goals in 4-2 setbackNov 24, 2017
INDIANAPOLIS – Despite another energetic, spirited effort Friday night, the Indy Fuel bowed to visiting Fort Wayne’s three-goal third period surge in a Komets 4-2 triumph at Indiana Farmers Coliseum.
In the first of nine clashes to be waged between the two in-state, in-division rivals, the Komets maintained their remarkable third period mastery of the Fuel, facsimile to last season when the Fort Wayners outscored the Fuel in that fateful final frame, 23-4.
In a hotly-contested, fiercely-competitive battle for the first 40-minutes, the two teams were knotted at 1-1 with both goals struck 4:26 apart in the first frame. Mason Baptista scored at the 2:05 mark to lift the Ks into an early but short-lived 1-0 advantage before Fuel team captain Mike Neal delivered his first of a pair of goals to deadlock matters at 1-1.
Though the second period was scoreless, it was not devoid of plenty of action as both goaltenders, Garrett Bartus of the Komets and Etienne Marcoux of the host Fuel were flawless as both teams were presented a trio of power play opportunities with both netminders flashing some lustrous leather larceny.
However, once again, the third period belonged to the Komets as they triggered a three-goal torrent in 5:41, sparked by a Gabriel Desjardins power play goal at the 12:39 mark, breaking the tie. Two more Fort Wayne strikes followed from Ryan Culkin (GWG) and Cody Sol before Neal connected in the game’s final minute to complete the game’s scoring and final result.
The Komets outshot the Fuel, 51-22 and 17-3 in a dominating third stanza. The 51-shots were the most surrendered by Indy through the first 15-games of the season while their 22-shots were the fewest registered at this stage of the season. Fort Wayne outshot the Fuel, 38-14 in the last 2-periods combined. The Fuel power play was 0-4; the Komets were 1-7, being the recipients of all 3 third period man advantages.
With the setback, the Fuel see their modest 2-game win streak stopped, lowering their record to 15(4-8-3) 11-points for the season and 7(3-4-0) at home where they are now 4(2-2-0) through the first 4-games of their 6-games’ home stand. Indy is 10(1-6-3) in its last 10-decisions against their archrivals and 6(1-3-2) in their last half-dozen dates at home against the Ks.
Next up is the first appearance of the season for the Kansas City Mavericks at the Indiana Farmers Coliseum Saturday night in a 7:35 pm face-off on “Star Wars Night.”
Single-Game tickets are now available for the entire 2017-18 Fuel season at Indiana Farmers Coliseum! Fans can also take advantage of a wide variety of Ticket Plans by calling 317-925-FUEL or visiting IndyFuelHockey.com. Don’t miss a second of the action during the 2017-18 season – follow the Fuel on Twitter and Instagram (@IndyFuel) and ‘Like’ the Fuel on Facebook.
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