Special Teams Play Big in Rivalry Win for Fuel
FORT WAYNE - The Fuel began their weekend on the road in Fort Wayne to take on the Komets. It was a story of special teams as the Fuel came out on top 3-1 thanks to timely goals by their penalty kill and power play units.
It was a quiet first 19 minutes and 59 seconds. Outside of eight total penalty minutes, the action came within exciting goal opportunities that ended in clinks and clanks off the posts on both sides.
However, with 0.2 seconds left in the period, Noah Ganske was all alone in front of the net and was able to get it past Zach Driscoll's blocker side to give the Komets a boost heading into the first intermission.
The second period came up all Fuel. It took until 8:19 but, on the penalty kill, Jordan Martin steals the puck away in the neutral zone and snipes one past Tyler Parks to tie the game up at one, but the scoring wasn't over for Indy.
The first goal was short-handed but the second was on the power play when Colin Bilek found the back of the net for his fourth goal in five games this season.
The Fuel kept the pressure on in the second period, putting 16 shots on net compared to just eight for the Komets, the same number they put up in the first period.
The final frame was anything but boring. The penalty minutes started early with a Colin Bilek tripping just 25 seconds into the period. That would be the first of 12 total penalties committed by the Fuel and Komets in the third period, including a late-game misconduct on Bray Crowder at 18:48.
Before all the fighting at the end of the period, Seamus Malone found the back of the net for an insurance goal at 8:21. After a time-consuming review, the goal was deemed true after the net was thought to be moved out of place.
Things would begin to get chippy in the second half of the final frame as the misfortune and unclean play from the Komets began to boil over into frustration. There were 52 total penalty minutes in the game with 38 of them coming in the third period.
It truly was a difference in special teams tonight as Fort Wayne went 0-5 on their power play compared to Indy's 1-7, plus a short-handed goal to kick off the Fuel's scoring. The game ended with 41 shots on goal from Indy to 31 shots on goal from Fort Wayne.
These two teams will meet again in less than 48 hours for a Sunday afternoon matchup at the Indiana Farmers Coliseum.
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