FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Komets were 2-0-1 and gained five points in week 25 of the 2015-16 ECHL campaign to improve to 39-21-9 and 87 points with one week remaining. The Komets clinched their first ECHL division title and will have home ice advantage in the first round of the 2016 Kelly Cup playoffs.
About last week— The Komets started the week with a 5-3 win at Cincinnati Tuesday and clinched a berth in the playoffs. Fort Wayne finished the season series at an even 5-5-0 against the Cyclones and extended their road point streak to 5-0-2.
The Komets returned home Saturday to upend the visiting Indy Fuel 5-2 for their third straight win and clinched first place in the Midwest division and home ice advantage in the first round.
Sunday the Komets finished the week with one of the team’s most fantastic finishes in the history of the club. After spotting Evansville a 4-0 lead the Komets rallied for four goals in the last 6:30 of the third period to tie the game and send it into overtime. Four different players scored to tie the game including David Friedmann, Shawn Szydlowski, Kyle Thomas and Jamie Schaafsma. The IceMen came away with the win, but the Komets entertained the Sunday home crowd of 6,414 by directing 30 shots during the third period rally and added three more in overtime to finish the game with 52 shots and a point.
Three to go— This week the Komets will cap the regular season slate with three games. Quad City visits Wednesday at 7:30pm for the final meeting of the season. The Komets are 2-3-1 after six meetings against the Mallards.
The Komets tangle with the Indy Fuel in a home-and-home series Friday and Saturday to complete the regular season schedule. The Komets travel to Indy Friday for a 7:35pm start before hosting the Fuel Saturday in the season finale at 7:30pm. The Komets lead the season series 6-2-1 after a 5-2 home win against Indy last Saturday night. The Fuel are idle this week until they finish the season against Fort Wayne this weekend.
End of Season Player Awards Saturday— The annual Komets End of Season Player Awards will be presented immediately following this Saturday’s game. A total of nine awards will be presented including the team’s Most Valuable Player of the Year Award.
PLAYOFF BOUND–First two playoff dates set— By clinching first place in the Midwest Division the Komets are guaranteed home-ice advantage for the first round. The first two games of round one will be Friday, April 15 at 8pm and Saturday, April 16 at 7:30pm at the Memorial Coliseum. First-place finishers in each division will be seeded 1, 2 and 3 and the next five highest point totals in each conference will qualify for the 2016 Kelly Cup playoffs. Schedules will be announced at the conclusion of the regular season.
Komet streaks— Garrett Meurs has a four-game point-scoring streak (5g, 2a). Three players have three-game point-scoring streaks including Shawn Szydlowski (2g, 2a), Jamie Schaafsma (3g, 1a) and Paul Crowder (1g, 4a). Szydlowski also has a seven-game road point streak (3g, 12a) and Schaafsma has a six-game road goal and point-scoring streak (7g, 3a). The Komets enter week 26 riding a four-game point streak (3-0-1) and have a seven-game road point streak (5-0-2).
Komet leaders— Szydlowski and Schaafsma lead with 24 goals each. Both players had three goals for the week. Schaafsma has not gone two consecutive games without a goal since Feb. 24 and 26 and has since netted 13 goals in 17 games….Szydlowski also leads with 50 assists and 73 points (3rd in ECHL)…..Szydlowski and Jordon Southorn lead with +21…..Cody Sol leads with 240 penalty minutes.
Shooting the puck— The Komets set an ECHL season record for shots in the third period with 30 shots Sunday against Evansville. The Fort Wayne record for shots in a single period is 32, set on March 27, 1965 vs. Dayton. The Komets rank third in the league with 2,264 shots after 69 games for a per-game average of 32.8.
Milestone— Newcomer Simon Denis scored his first pro point (assist) in his second game as a pro Sunday against Evansville.
Taking the lead into the third— The Komets continue unbeaten at 26-0-0 when taking the lead into the third period after leading 3-1 at the end of the second period Saturday against Indy and eventually claiming a 5-2 win.