In their first game since alternate captain Brett Smith guaranteed a playoff spot, the Komets lost 6-1 Friday to the worst team in the Eastern Conference, the Evansville IceMen in front of 7,301 fans at the Ford Center.
The teams will meet again Saturday at Memorial Coliseum, when the Komets will be at least three points back of the eighth and final playoff spot, with 20 games remaining.
Fort Wayne's only goal came from Thomas Beauregard, who accepted Brett Smith's pass from the right corner and blasted it in, but the IceMen had already built a five-goal lead.
Evansville (18-30-5) was paced by Kevin Baker's two goals and two assists, Todd Robinson's one goal and three assists and Josh Beaulieu's four assists.
Komets goalie Marco Cousineau was pulled after allowing four goals on 16 shots. Charlie Effinger allowed 2 on 13 in relief.
Evansville's Paul Dainton stopped 37 of 38 shots, handing the Komets (26-24-2) their fifth loss in their last seven games.
The Komets played without captain Colin Chaulk (foot), forward John Dunbar (lower body) and defenseman Scott Kishel (hand).
This was the first of three games in as many nights for the Komets.
About 2,300 tickets remain for Saturday's game, which is the annual Comcast Report Card Night. Kids with an 'A' or equivalent grade on their report cards can get one free ticket at the Coliseum box office.View comments