Fort Wayne, IN — It took 86 minutes, 45 seconds but the Komets finally solved Reading goaltender Brandon Anderson at 6:45 of the second overtime to take the game 2-1 and eliminate the defending Kelly Cup Champs 4 games to 1 in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Quarterfinals Sunday night at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.
Aaron Clarke (F) was the star of the night, scoring the game winner, a remarkable one-timer from the front of the net assisted by Shawn Szydlowski (F) and Christian Ouellet (F) and ended all nail biting for 5,008 Fort Wayne fans in attendance.
Fort Wayne scored the first goal of the match at 2:48 of the first period when Dean Ouellet (C) scored his second of the playoffs with helpers from Szydlowski and Mike Embach (F). Szydlowski totaled a two-point night (1g, 1a) to extend his win streak to all four playoff games to date (3g, 3a). Reading’s Sean Wiles scored the equalizer, his third marker of the post season, at 17:29 to finish the scoring in regulation for the night.
Komet goaltender Ben Meisner posted his third straight win in his fifth straight start making 39 saves of 40 shots. Anderson suffered the loss for the Royals allowing two goals on 36 Komet shots.
While it was the first ECHL series for Fort Wayne, the Komets are now 18-0 when leading a series 3-1 over the storied 62-year history of the Fort Wayne club and 53 playoff season appearances.
ECHL Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
Fort Wayne Komets vs Reading Royals
Fort Wayne wins best-of-seven series 4-1
1) Thursday, April 17………..Fort Wayne Komets 2, at Reading Royals 1
2) Saturday, April 19……….at Reading Royals 4, Fort Wayne Komets 2
3) Thursday, April 24……….at Fort Wayne 5,Reading 1
4) Friday, April 25……………at Fort Wayne 3, Reading Royals 1
5) Sunday, April 27………….Reading Royals 1 at Fort Wayne 2 (2OT)
Fort Wayne advances to the Eastern Conference Semifinals which will be played against the winner of the Cincinnati-Orlando series. Cincinnati leads that series 3-2 and will skate game 6 at Orlando Tuesday. Dates of the next series are yet to be determined. However tickets for the next two Komet home playoff games will go on sale tomorrow (Monday) at Noon at the Coliseum Ticket Office and online at www.ticketmaster.com. For Komet playoff ticket information call the Komet office at 260-483-0011 or visit www.komets.com.