The Kalamazoo Wings (0-1-0-0) kicked off their 46th season of hockey on the road this past Saturday night as they battled their long-time rival, the Fort Wayne Komets (1-0-0-0).
The K-Wings outshot the Komets 43-27, but the Komets skated away with the 5-2 victory.
Scoring just 18 seconds into the opening period, the Komets Brycen Martin gave the home team an early 1-0 lead.
Doubling their lead later in the period, the Komets Alan Lyszczarczyk scored a power-play goal, forcing in a rebound past K-Wing netminder Jack Kielly, who was making his professional debut.
Getting on the scoreboard late in the first period, Justin Taylor, in his first game back following a season-ending injury last January, scored the team’s first goal of the season with just 17 seconds left in the frame.
Like they did in the opening period, the Komets scored a pair of goals to take a 4-1 lead over the K-Wings. Both goals were scored by Matthew Boudens. Boudens’ second goal was actually scored by a K-Wing player who inadvertently pushed it into the net. The short-handed goal was credited to Boudens.
Adam Dauda cut the Komets lead to 4-2 with his first professional goal at the end of the second period.
The K-Wings fired off 17 shots in the third period, but Komet goaltender Cole Kehler turned them all away. The Komets added an empty-net goal with 30 seconds remaining in the game.
The K-Wings’ 46th Home Opener is next Saturday, October 19th against the Cincinnati Cyclones at 7:00 p.m. at Wings Event Center. Come early, as the team’s annual Fan Fest will precede the game, starting at 4:30 p.m.
Fan Fest will include a player red carpet, a bounce house, live music, food trucks, and new this year, a Smash Car. Fans wanting to participate in smashing the Cyclones themed car can pay $5 for 6 swings or $20 for two minutes of unlimited swings, with the proceeds going to the Southwest Michigan Miracle League.
By: Mark C. McGlothlen