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Samuel Hoffman | The Journal Gazette
The Komets’ Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock celebrates a goal Thursday. Schrock scored twice and made sure the Komets didn’t play flat after winning the first two of the series.

Schrock’s hustle is paying dividends

– The Komets’ Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock was in the middle of a scrum near the blue line as the final horned blared at the end of Game 3 of the Presidents’ Cup finals Thursday at Memorial Coliseum.

The Komets defeated Wichita 7-3 to take 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series, and Schrock clearly didn’t want the Thunder to think Fort Wayne was going to ease up.

Schrock, a native of Fort Wayne, had gone full-throttle the entire game. He scored twice, giving him three points in the series.

“His commitment to hard work, every single night, it’s good to see him being rewarded,” said Komets forward Mike Vaskivuo, who leads all playoff scorers with eight goals and 21 points in 16 games.

The Komets have had great depth in the playoffs. The only players to not score goals have been defenseman David Starenky, who has played six games, and Derek Roehl, who has played in one.

Schrock, a forward on the Komets’ third line with Jean-Michel Rizk and Stephon Thorne, has five goals, eight points, a plus-3 rating and 24 penalty minutes in the postseason.

His efforts Thursday helped bring the Komets within one victory of getting their ninth Cup in 60 years and their fourth since 2008.

The Komets can cement their championship tonight at the Coliseum

“It’s fun,” Schrock said of his two goals in Game 3. “It’s fun when you see everyone working hard and everyone’s on the same page and we can smell it now. That was a big game. If we lost that game, they were right back in it.”

If the Komets leave the CHL this summer for the ECHL, it will mean some changes to the lineup since the ECHL is filled with younger prospects. Schrock, 27, would go from being a younger energy player to more of a veteran presence.

He’s already in his second season as an alternate captain and has shown a willingness to do just about anything to win.

“It was fun to see everyone so focused (Thursday),” he said. “I thought we lacked that in the last series, when we won two on the road at Missouri and then we came out flat (in Game 5). We learned from our mistake and that’s a good characteristic of a winning team.”