FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Walleye snapped a five-game winless streak with a 5-3 victory over Fort Wayne tonight.
Forward Willie Coetzee, who will represent Toledo at the ECHL all star game later this month, scored two goals. Defenseman Cody Lampl scored the game winner near the midpoint of the third period.
Newcomers Nino Musitelli and Tyler Brenner also scored for Toledo (20-16-4). Coetzee scored an empty net goal with 35 seconds left. Rookie forward Travis Novak had two assists.
Toledo outshot the Komets 28-27 and both teams went 0 of 1 on the power play.
Walleye goaltender Kent Simpson made 24 saves to improve to 8-8-3.
Each team had eight shots in a scoreless first period.
Musitelli scored his first of the season just 1:45 into the second period when he wristed a shot past Fort Wayne goalie Ken Reiter (23 saves).
The Walleye then went up 2-0 at 3:25 of the second period when Coetzee skated in front of the net and beat Reiter with a backhand shot.
After the Komets got on the board in the second, Toledo seized a 3-1 edge when Brenner scored his first goal at 11:43 of the third.
The lead ballooned to 4-1 when Lampl collected his third goal of the season at 13:45.
But the Komets then scored back-to-back goals to trim Toledo’s lead to 4-3. Coetzee capped the scoring with an empty net goal at 19:35.
“We worked very hard this week during practice,” Walleye coach Nick Vitucci said. “It was good to see all the hard work rewarded tonight.”
Toledo is now 5-2-0 against Fort Wayne and 11-10-1 on the road. The Walleye play at Evansville on Saturday night.
They return home next Friday against the Kalamazoo Wings at the Huntington Center.