The Utica Comets defeated the Rochester Americans again. The good news is that the two teams only play one more time in the regular season and hopefully that’s it. The Comets have had the Amerks number all season and won again on Wednesday night in the second straight shootout. The season series is now 6-1-1-1 in favor of the comets with six of those nine games going into extra time.
Kevin Porter scored at 8:43 of the first on the power play to give the Amerks a 1-0 lead and it was the only lead they’d have the whole game. Porter redirected a perfect pass from Seth Griffith into the net past Thatcher Demko.
(Featured photo by the Utica Comets)
The Amerks controlled the pace of the game through the first 15 minutes of the first period until Darren Archibald tied the game up with 4:07 left in the first. Cole Cassels saw Archibald all alone to his left who was able to pick his shot from the middle of the face off circle.
Cole Cassels gave the Comets a 2-1 lead at 3:01 of the second skating right into the slot and receiving a pass from Michael Carcone who put on a slick spin o rama move on Eric Knodel. All eyes were on Carcone and Cassels just skated right on in.
The last five minutes of the second period was showing signs of the momentum working back into the Amerks favor but they still weren’t able to score on Demko.
CJ Smith tied the game up 2-2 at 7:11 of the third period on a breakaway. Eric Cornel was able to spot CJ Smith breaking out, hit him with a pass and Smith and he was able to deke Demko out of position and score the goal.
In the shootout it went to four shooters with only Kevin Porter scoring for the Amerks. Reid Boucher scored on the Comets third try and Nikolay Goldobin scored on the fourth to win it.
The other Amerks shooters were Sahir Gill, Seth Griffith and CJ Smith.
Linus Ullmark had 35 saves and was the third star of the game. On paper it’s his third loss but can’t hold any of the losses against him when scoring in the other direction is an issue.
It’s the second straight shootout loss and the third loss in less than a week for the Amerks. The good news is that they’re still in second place. The bad news is that they aren’t playing hockey like they had been. Its also possible that teams chasing them have them figured out. Whatever it is the team heads to Charlotte for two games this weekend with the opportunity to turn it around.