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Justin A. Cohn/The Journal Gazette
Goaltender Cody Reichard takes to the ice for Saturday's game at Memorial Coliseum

Breaking down frustrating night

Komets coughed up a 3-goal lead in shootout loss to Cincy

Gary Graham's record as coach of the Komets is 0-0-2 and he's frustrated with that right now.

The Komets coughed up a three-goal lead Saturday night and lost 5-4 in an overtime shootout to the Cincinnati Cyclones.

"That's unacceptable. They gave us a dose of our medicine in the third period," said Graham, whose Komets had 13 of the first 16 shots and 28 of the first 40, while building a 3-0 lead by 10:27 of the second period lead on goals from Tristan King, Brandon Marino and Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock.

That's when things went sour, as 8,484 fans were there to celebrate the jersey retirements of goaltenders Chuck Adamson (No. 1) and Nick Boucher (No. 33), who led the Komets to six of their nine playoff titles in 62 years.

"Obviously, (the Cyclones) started playing and they brought it," Marino said. "And we sat back on our heels a little bit. We didn't make confident plays with the puck and that bit us. We gave up two points and we've got to learn from it. We've got to learn how to put teams away."

Thirty seconds after Schrock scored on a 40-foot shot, Cincinnati forward Anthony Luciani broke past defenseman Nick Tuzzolino and scored on a high shot. Then forward John McFarland scored, just off a faceoff, at 6:15 of the third period, and defenseman Brett Wysopal tied it off a rebound at 15:08.

Marino answered with a spinning shot from the slot at 16:48, but the Cyclones (3-0-0) forced overtime by taking advantage of a turnover and getting a Barry Almeida goal at 17:23.

"That was the most disappointing thing – being at our own blue line with the forwards thinking about offense before the puck was cleared (of the defensive zone)," Graham said. "We're a young team and new team and we're trying to learn our way."

Coupled with their 4-3 loss to Toledo in the season opener, the Komets have scored on only 1 of 10 attempts in shootouts.

There was also a parade to the penalty box Saturday -- Cincinnati was 0 for 9 on power plays and Fort Wayne was 0 for 5 -- and that has to stop.

The Komets did mention that some of the penalty calls from referee Peter Tarnaris were, in their opinion, weak. But they said the referee had no interest in discussing anything with them about the calls.

The Komets play today at Evansville.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at jcohn@jg.net.

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