WICHITA, Kan. (Feb. 10) – Wichita held off a furious third-period rally from Fort Wayne on Saturday night, claiming a 3-2 win at INTRUST Bank Arena.
The Komets outshot the Thunder in the final frame, 21-5, but Wichita didn't break and held on to take three-of-four points this week.
Jason Pineo, Peter Bates and Mitchell Russell provided the offense for the Thunder. Trevor Gorsuch was brilliant in net for Wichita, stopping 30 shots.
Bates opened the scoring late in the first period. Morgan Adams-Moisan was assessed a boarding major after he hammered Michal Stinil from behind near the penalty boxes. Bates found the net at 19:15 for his 23rd of the year, firing a wrist shot from between the circles past Tyler Parks.
In the second, Jack Gorniak tied it at one at 3:17. He stole a loose puck on the right wall, skated near the net and fired a shot through a screen past Gorsuch.
At 8:19, Russell tallied his second of the year to make it 2-1. Bates made a terrific pass to him at the top of the crease and he found a wide-open net.
Pineo added to the Wichita lead at 18:03. Dillon Boucher fed a pass to the net that tipped off the stick of Connor Corcoran. Pineo took advantage of the mistake and beat Parks from in-close to make it 3-1.
In the third, Corcoran cut the Thunder lead to 3-2 with a wrist shot from the left circle on the power play.
Fort Wayne continued its relentless pressure down the stretch and called its timeout with a minute left.
Pineo nearly tallied an empty-netter, but his shot went wide to the right post. The Komets came back down the ice with 15 seconds left and had a late chance. Gorsuch made a few tough saves during a net-mouth scramble and the Thunder held on for the win.
Wichita was 1-for-5 on the power play. Fort Wayne was 1-for-2 with the man advantage.
Pineo has goals in three-straight and four goals in his last six. Russell has four points in his last five games. Dickman has points in back-to-back games. Bates has three points in his last two outings.
The Thunder heads on the road on Valentine's Day to face Allen next Wednesday night.
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