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The Journal Gazette

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Zach Fucale keeps an eye on the play during the second period of Thursday's game against Brampton at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komet's Jason Binkley sends the puck across the ice in the first period of Thursday's game at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Garrett Ladd looks for a shot on goal n the first period of Thursday's game against Brampton at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Bob Chase's family was on hand for the Komets game against Brampton.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Justin Kea keeps the puck just ahead of Brampton's Jordan Henry in the first period of Thursday's game at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Brampton's Brandon Marino, a former Komets player.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Jackson Leef, from Fort Wayne, plays for Brampton Beast in the second period of Thursday's game against the Komets at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Justin Kea keeps control of the puck n the first period of Thursday's game against Brampton at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Bob Chase's family was on hand for the Komets game against Brampton.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Jason Binkley looks for a shot around the defense of Brampton's Jackson Leef n the first period of Thursday's game at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Ryan Lowney sends the puck down the ice in the first period of Thursday's game against Brampton at the Memorial Coliseum.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Bob Chase's family was on hand for the Komets game against Brampton.

  • Michelle Davies | The Journal Gazette Komets' Shawn Szydlowski fights to get the puck around the defense of Brampton's Jordan Henry in the first period of Thursday's game at the Memorial Coliseum.

Thursday, November 22, 2018 10:20 pm

Komets power past Brampton

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

Tonight, anyway, the Komets’ power play was up to the challenge. So was goaltender Zach Fucale.

The Komets scored on 2 of 5 opportunities with the man-advantage. Fucale turned away 27 of 29 shots against his former team, including a breakaway by Ryan Scarfo that could have tied it midway through the third period.

And the Komets defeated the Colin Chaulk-coached Brampton Beast 3-2 in front of 7,865 fans at Memorial Coliseum.

(Video highlights are above.)

It was the Bob Chase Memorial Thanksgiving Game, in honor of the beloved broadcaster, who called games for WOWO for 63 seasons before his death on Thanksgiving in 2016.

The Komets sold special Chase bobbleheads – 100 percent of the proceeds benefited WOWO’s charitable Penny Pitch drive – and members of Chase’s family were on hand at the game.

It was also the first time that Brampton’s Jackson Leef, a native of Fort Wayne and the son of former Komets forward Ron Leef, got to play at the Coliseum as a professional. Ron Leef is a member of the Komets’ Hall of Fame.

The scoreless first period was a show by the goaltenders – Brampton’s Etienne Marcoux turned away 15 shots and Fucale seven – but it took only 18 seconds of the second period for the Komets to net a goal. Fort Wayne’s Ryan Lowney stole the puck along the blue line from Jackson Leef and sent a pass to J.C. Campagna, who snapped a 30-foot shot past Marcoux.

The Beast tied it 4:42 later, when Daniel Ciampini’s slapshot from the left circle was deemed to have slipped just inside the far goalpost by referee Cameron Fleming.

But the Komets’ power play, which came into the night ranked only 15th among the ECHL’s 27 teams with an efficiency of 15.7 percent, then took control. Jake Kamrass skated from center ice, circumventing the entire Brampton defense, and wristed the puck high on Marcoux at 8:52.

And Justin Hodgman made it 3-1 by redirecting a shot at 10:29 from Shawn Szydlowski, who played his first game at the Coliseum since returning from Norway.

The Beast’s Jordan Henry scored from the slot 7:27 into the third period – he was set up by former Fort Wayne star Brandon Marino – and Fucale foiled Scarfo on a breakaway at 10:02 to keep the Komets’ lead at 3-2.

Marcoux stopped 36 of 39 shots.

Brampton was 0 for 4 on power plays.

Notes: Phelix Martineau, who had five goals and 10 points in 10 games with the Komets this season, was recalled by Laval of the American Hockey League. … Fort Wayne’s Marco Roy missed a fourth straight game with a concussion suffered on a hit from Rapid City’s Adam Marsh. … The Komets also played without Aidan Muir, Chase Stewart and goalie Kyle Hayton. … Brampton, coached by former Komets captain Colin Chaulk, has former Fort Wayne player Artur Tianulin, who last season was going by Artur Tyanulin. However, he was not in the lineup.

jcohn@jg.net