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Komets falter against Reading

The Komets came into tonight having won consecutive games for only the second time this season, and having gone two games above .500 for the first time.

But they got shellacked 5-1 by the defending-champion Reading Royals at Memorial Coliseum.

Fort Wayne (10-9-4) and Reading (11-9-1) meet again Saturday at the Coliseum.

Friday night provided redemption for the Royals, who fell to the Komets 7-2 on Dec. 7 in Pennsylvania.

The Royals began the scoring nine seconds into their second power play, with forward Louie Caporusso, stationed to the left of the Fort Wayne net, sending a 9-foot shot past goaltender Cody Reichard at 16:34 of the first period. It was only the seventh time in 23 games this season the Komets have failed to score first, and it also snapped a string of 11 straight successful penalty kills for Fort Wayne.

Defenseman Michal Cajkovsky made it 2-0 at 5:38 of the second period with a blistering slapshot from the left circle that sailed into the far side of the net, and defenseman Matt Campanale scored just under three minutes later with a wrist shot from between the circles.

Seconds after he got out of the penalty box, Reading forward Domenic Monardo scored on a breakaway for a 4-0 lead at 11:09 of the second period, in front of 6,271 fans.

And the victory was cemented at 3:07 of the third period, when a tic-tac-toe passing play was finished by Reading forward Dustin Gazley from the slot for a 5-0 lead.

Fort Wayne's Mike Vaskivuo scored at 8:39 to spoil the shutout for goalie Riley Gill.

Notes: Brandon Marino extended his point-scoring streak to seven games, during which he has six goals and 12 points. … Mike Embach’s six-game point streak ended, as did Reichard’s three-game unbeaten streak. … Fort Wayne’s Dan Cohen was one of the linesmen.

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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