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Komets
at Evansville
When: 10:30 a.m. today
Radio: 1380 am, 106.7 FM

After Vegas trip, Komets stress greater consistency

Graham

– The Komets are hoping what happened in Vegas doesn’t stay in Vegas.

They won 2 of 3 games to get back to .500 heading into this morning’s game at Evansville.

Despite the recent success, there is much work to be done.

“Just the level of consistency is what we’re working on,” coach Gary Graham said. “That’s a common thread for us, not being a one-dimensional team.”

Sensing Las Vegas had solved some of Fort Wayne’s speed, adjustments were made before Sunday’s 4-1 victory and Graham would like to see more of what he saw that day.

“We knew going into Sunday that we had to get more bodies to the net and play more of a nuts-and-bolts approach and that’s what we did,” he said.

“That’s why we scored four goals and drew more power plays.”

The Komets (2-2-2) started off their five-game road trip with their worst performance of the season, a 4-2 loss to the IceMen (4-1-0), and that’s who they play today – in a game that starts at 10:30 a.m.

Since the last game at the Ford Center, the Komets have found their physical side – there were fights in all three games with the Wranglers – and good goaltending.

Since being sent to the Komets by the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres, Andrey Makarov is 2-1-0 with a 1.34 goals-against average and a .957 save percentage.

“He was a real bright spot for the weekend,” Graham said.

“He was a workhorse last year with his junior team. With the scoring chances we had Saturday (in a 2-1 loss), he should have had more goal support. And he didn’t have any chance on the goals he gave up.”

Today, the Komets will start Cody Reichard in net.

Mickey Lang and Brandon Marino, who were linemates with the CHL’s Quad City Mallards in 2011-12, have reconnected quickly. They are tied for the Komets’ scoring lead with four goals and seven points apiece.

Scott Fleming has one goal, six points and a plus-5 rating.

As for coaching a morning game, which will be filled with notoriously loud school kids, it will be a new experience for Graham.

“It’s something where you have to be lasered in right away,” he said.

“You’ve got to get whatever meal in and be prepared like any other game. Warm-ups will be important to get some guys going at the early hour. The music in the locker room will be louder and the coffee pots will be ready to go.”

Notes: On Friday at Memorial Coliseum, it will be Military Salute Night.

Veterans will get into the game against the Wheeling Nailers free by showing their service identification.

The Komets are also asking veterans to wear their uniforms or, at least, a hat.

jcohn@jg.net

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