FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Matt Berry found the back of the net twice and Billy Christopoulos made 37 saves as the Toledo Walleye skated to a 6-3 victory over the Fort Wayne Komets Friday night.
The Walleye scored twice in each period to build on their lead throughout the contest. Five players picked up multiple points as the Fish improved to 31-10-1-2, extending their road win streak to six straight games. Toledo is also now victorious in three straight games.
Fort Wayne only took 11 seconds to get on the board as Anthony Petruzzelli found the back of the net to give the Komets the lead. Petruzzelli was assisted by Willie Corrin and Connor Corcoran.
Ten minutes later, the Walleye tied things up with a goal from Matt Berry at 10:14, extending Berry’s point streak to nine straight games. Berry’s 12th goal of the season was assisted by TJ Hensick and Ryan Lowney.
Toledo found itself down a skater at the 18:28 mark when Randy Gazzola entered the penalty box for slashing, but that didn’t stop Brett Boeing from scoring 29 seconds later to give the Walleye the lead. Boeing stole the puck from Fort Wayne, skated down the ice, and put the puck in the back of the net for the unassisted shorthanded goal, his 15th tally of the year.
The Fish ended the first period with the 2-1 lead, outshooting the Komets, 15-12, in the opening 20 minutes. However, just 13 seconds into the second, Lynden McCallum scored a power play goal with Gazzola still in the penalty box due to his first period slashing penalty. Kellen Jones and Willie Corrin assisted as the Komets pulled even with the Walleye.
Just like the first period, the Walleye responded to the early Fort Wayne goal with two goals of their own. Matt Berry scored his second goal of the game on a power play goal at 5:23, increasing his season total to 13. John Albert earned the primary assist while TJ Hensick picked up his second helper of the game with the secondary assist.
Late in the second period, Keeghan Howdeshell extended the Toledo lead to two with his ninth goal of the season at 16:18. Ryan Lowney added his second assist of the game while Randy Gazzola provided the secondary helper.
With 18 seconds left in the period, multiple scuffles broke out, resulting in Toledo ending the period shorthanded. Fort Wayne’s Matt Alvaro and Toledo’s Brett Boeing were called for roughing while Brandon Schultz picked up a slashing call. Once again, the Walleye came out of the intermission shorthanded, but this time they earned the penalty kill to keep the score at 4-2.
At the 9:22 mark in the third period, Brandon Schultz extended the Walleye lead to three with his ninth goal of the season. Randy Gazzola picked up his second assist of the game with the primary assist while Devon Paliani earned the secondary assist.
Three minutes later, Fort Wayne trimmed the lead back to two as Zach Pochiro found the back of the net at 12:45. Will Graber and Willie Corin picked up the helpers as the score became 5-3, still in favor of the Walleye.
Things started to get chippy late in the contest as multiple skirmishes broke out behind the Toledo net with 3:06 to go. No penalties were assessed, but that changed quickly as the teams got together 14 seconds later after Willie Corrin and Matt Berry got in an altercation. Both players were called for roughing while Corrin was also assessed a holding penalty, setting the Walleye up for another power play. As Berry skated to the penalty box, Corrin threw a trash can at him out of the penalty box, resulting in a ten-minute misconduct to end his night.
Just after the Walleye power play ended, John Albert capped off the scoring with his 15th goal of the season with 46 seconds left in regulation. TJ Hensick collected his third assist of the game to increase his team-high points total to 48. Ryan Lowney added his second helper of the night with the secondary assist, and the Walleye earned the 6-3 win to improve to 6-3-0 against the Komets this season.
The Walleye edged the Komets, 42-40, in shots on goal, taking 22 shots in the second period for their highest total in a period this season. Each team scored once on the power play, with Toledo earning four opportunities to Fort Wayne’s two.
Billy Christopoulos made 37 saves on 40 shots en route to his 15th win of the season. Samuel Harvey made 36 saves on 42 shots in the loss for Fort Wayne.
The Walleye conclude their road trip Sunday afternoon when they visit the Cincinnati Cyclones for the second time in five days. Puck drop from Heritage Bank Center is set for 3 p.m.
- Toledo – Matt Berry (power play goal, equal strength goal)
- Toledo – Keeghan Howdeshell (game-winning goal)
- Toledo – TJ Hensick (three assists)