Fort Wayne, IN-- The Komets eliminated the Toledo Walleye in the best-of-seven Central Division Finals series 4-2 with a 4-2 victory Tuesday night at the Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne and will advance to the ECHL Western Conference Finals against the Colorado Eagles.
Toledo jumped out front with a 2-1 series lead before the Komets logged three straight wins to seize the series. It was only the second time this year the Walleye lost three games in a row in regulation dating back to Dec. 9. It's the first series taken from Toledo by the Komets in the ECHL after three post-season meetings. The last time the Komets eliminated a Toledo team from the playoffs was in 1980 with a 4-0 sweep of the Goaldiggers in an IHL first-round series.
A weekday crowd of 6,160 witnessed Mason Baptista open the scoring at 6:01 of the first period before Toledo answered with a pair of markers in a span of 2:19 at 14:27 and 16:46. Jason Binkley pulled the Komets even at 18:13 on the power play for a 2-2 tie at the end of one.
Gabriel Desjardins scored the only goal of the second period to give the Komets a 3-2 lead going into the second intermission. The third period was scoreless until 62 seconds remaining when Shawn Szydlowski potted an open-netter after Toledo goaltender Pat Nagle vacated his post for the extra attacker.
Komet goaltender Michael Houser earned the series-winning game making 28 saves on 30 shots in his 10th straight playoff appearance. Nagle suffered the loss allowing three goals on 33 shots.
The Komets will open the third round series against the Eagles Saturday at 9:05pm Fort Wayne time. Game 2 is slated for Sunday at 9:05pm ET. The series will follow a 2-3-2 format and will switch to Fort Wayne for games 3, 4 and 5. Game 3 is Wednesday, May 16. Game 4 is Friday, May 18 and if needed game 5 is Saturday May 19. If necessary, games 6 and 7 are scheduled to be skated at Colorado Tuesday, May 22 and Wednesday, May 23.
Tickets for games in Fort Wayne Wednesday, May 16 and Friday, May 18 will go on sale Wednesday morning at 10:00 at the Coliseum ticket office. Season tickets for 2018-19 with special early bird pricing are also on sale a the Komet office at 1010 Memorial Way in Fort Wayne. For more information visit the Komet office, Komets.com or call 260-483-0011.