``We just came out and went up 3-1 and we weren't going to be denied,'' Komets coach Al Sims said in a phone interview. ``We never lost the lead the whole game. They made a couple of runs at us, but the defense was great and Charlie (Effinger) played great.''
Colorado scored first, 3:30 after the opening faceoff on a goal by Steve Haddon, but the Komets scored the next three. Eric Giosa, Garrett Klotz and Brett Smith each scored within 3:19 as the Komets showed this was not going to be like Wednesday night's 2-1 loss to the Eagles.
The Eagles rallied to tie the game with 2:09 left in the first period, but Fort Wayne's Brandon Marino scored with 40 seconds left to regain the lead.
``Every time they made a run at us, we answered with another goal,'' Sims said.
The second period settled down, finally. Colorado's Joey Sides tied the game 4-4 12:33 in, but three minutes later Komets defenseman Ryan Hegarty found a loose puck to put Fort Wayne back in front. Matt Firman opened the third period with a critical power-play goal to give the Komets a two-goal edge. That lasted until Colorado's Kyle Ostrow scored with 1:09 left as the Eagles had the extra attacker.
The Komets prevented another shot on goal after that. Fort Wayne outshot Colorado 11-5 in the final period but was outshot in the game 35-30.
Marino finished with a goal and two assists; Firman, Giosa and Hegarty each had a goal and an assist. Giosa and Tyler Butler were both plus-4 and Hegarty was plus-3. Effinger finished with 30 saves.
``Hegarty had his best game of the season,'' Sims said. ``He was outstanding.''
Colorado scored four of its five goals on nine power-play chances.
The Komets were also playing short-handed on defense as rookie Scott Kishel sat out with a sore hand that will also keep him out of tonight's game.
``I thought they all played great and got a lot of minutes,'' Sims said. ``It was a heck of an effort by our defensive corps.''
The Komets will also be without goaltender Marco Cousineau, who has been called up to Norfolk of the American Hockey League. That means the Komets need to find an emergency goaltender and that Effinger will start again tonight for the fourth game in a row.
``He's hot, he's feeling it and he's playing great,'' Sims said.
The win keeps the Komets four points behind Toledo and Cincinnati, who are tied for first place in the ECHL's North Division. The Cyclones play at Greenville tonight and the Walleye are at South Carolina. Cincinnati is at Gwinnett on Sunday while the Komets and Walleye are off.
OnlineFor more on the Komets, follow Blake Sebring on Twitter at www.twitter.com/blakesebring and at his blog, www.tailingthekomets.com.
Komets at Colorado
Faceoff: 9 p.m.
Radio: WOWO, 1190-AM