FORT WAYNE – The Komets are probably in no rush to return from Orlando, Fla., and not just because the weather is better.
Led by two goals from Luca Caputi and 35 saves by Charlie Effinger, the Komets defeated the Solar Bears 3-0 at the Amway Center on Saturday night.
Coupled with their 5-4 victory in an overtime shootout on Friday, this makes for the Komets’ first back-to-back wins since a five-game streak ended Nov. 10.
Effinger hadn’t played since Nov. 24, and his best work came early in the second period, when he stopped a flurry of shots to set off a 2-on-1 rush, during which Ryan Lasch fed Caputi for the goal.
Effinger is one of only four ECHL goalies with multiple shutouts this season.
Caputi also scored on a rebound, as did Jean-Michel Rizk, as the Komets (11-8-1) won despite being decimated at center. Captain Colin Chaulk missed his first game of the season because of a shoulder injury suffered Friday, and center Brett Smith sat out a third straight game with a groin injury.
However, right wing Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock was back in, after serving his one-game suspension for instigating a late fight at Gwinnett, Ga., on Nov. 30. He fought Mike Liambas twice and also got a late misconduct for a scrum.
For the Solar Bears (9-11-4), who have lost 7 of 8 games, Darcy Kuemper stopped 32 shots.
The teams meet again at 3 p.m. today.