FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 3, 2023
K-WINGS FIGHT BACK LATE, KOMETS PREVAIL AT HOME
Kalamazoo scores two power-play goals in the third period, Fort Wayne hangs on for the victory.
FORT WAYNE, IN – The Kalamazoo Wings (17-21-3-0), proud ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Columbus Blue Jackets, fell behind big early to the Fort Wayne Komets (19-14-4-2), but fought back with a pair of power-play goals in the third, and unfortunately fell by a score of 4-2 Friday at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.
Justin Taylor (8, 9) netted his fourth and fifth power play goals for the K-Wings for his second multi-goal game of the season, and the K-Wings had life coming down the stretch after a dominating first two frames by the Komets.
The Komets jumped out of the gate with a goal at the 1:13 mark of the first, added a power-play tally at 6:23 and made it 3-0 at the 14:51 mark.
Frustrations boiled over at the end of the first period, as a line brawl broke out, including K-Wings starting netminder Evan Cormier (5-14-2-0). The play resulted in coincidental minors assessed to both teams and a ‘leaving the crease’ minor penalty added for the K-Wings.
Fort Wayne then capitalized with a power play strike for its fourth goal at the 1:41 mark of the second. The natural hat trick tally for Komets defenseman Darien Kielb (2,3,4) capped off a four-point night for the Bakersfield (AHL) product.
Kalamazoo dented the scoreboard with the man advantage at the 7:23 mark, with Taylor tipping in a Olivier LeBlanc (5) shot from just above the right circle. Matheson Iacopelli (8) contributed the secondary assist.
Then, at the 11:23 mark, Taylor struck again, flipping a wrist shot inside the left post off of a beautiful feed from Carson Focht (11). Focht received the puck from Iacopelli (9) coming into the offensive zone, skated down to just below the goal line, and hooked a pass around a diving Komets defender to Taylor crashing the crease.
The K-Wings maintained the pressure the rest of the way with 18 shots in the third period. Cormier got better and better as the game went on, stopping 46 of 50 shots faced in defeat.
Kalamazoo immediately heads home to run it back against Fort Wayne at 7:00 p.m. EST on Saturday at Wings Event Center.
Saturday’s ‘Hockey is for Her’ game caps the K-Wings’ Hockey is for Everyone campaign and invites women of all ages to get involved with the game of hockey. Tickets are available HERE, and stick around after the game for the ‘Hockey is for Everyone’ jersey auction, with proceeds going to OutFront Kalamazoo.
It’s time for the perfect Valentine's Day surprise! Get your tickets HERE, and join the K-Wings for the annual Pink Ice game on Feb. 11 at 7:00 p.m. at Wings event Center versus the Indy Fuel. Prior to the game, we’ll honor breast cancer survivors with a ceremonial puck drop, and there'll be a breast cancer specialty jersey auction immediately following the game!
The Kalamazoo Wings are a professional hockey team located in southwest Michigan that has been a staple in the Kalamazoo, MI professional sports landscape since 1974. The K-Wings compete in the ECHL and are the AA affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Columbus Blue Jackets and the American Hockey League’s Cleveland Monsters. Kalamazoo plays their 36 regular season home games at Wings Event Center from October through April.