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COMETS LOSE TO CRUNCH IN OVERTIME, 5-4

Syracuse, NY. — It was a rare Monday afternoon road contest for the Utica Comets, winners of three straight games, against their in-state and division rival, the Syracuse Crunch. The Comets headed into the game taking points in six contests in a row and had their sights set on continuing their winning ways against a team they see more often than any other during the regular season. With a wild first period seeing five goals scored, the teams were tied after regulation time. It took a last-second goal for the Crunch to seize the extra point while the Comets took points in their seventh straight game in a 5-4 loss.

In the first period, it only took 10 seconds for the Crunch to capitalize on a point shot by Phil Meyers after the puck deflected off a Comets defenseman and passed Akira Schmid on a lucky bounce for Syracuse that put Utica down, 1-0. The Comets answered back, and it was the powerplay that got it done after Justin Dowling scored from Xavier Parent and Tyler Wotherspoon. The powerplay goal made it ten games in a row for Utica and it was Dowling’s eighth goal of the season. The Crunch Devante Stephens gave the Crunch a lead again after a goal on a rush down the ice at 4:52. The goal put Utica down by one, but it was Ryan Schmelzer who scored shorthanded at 10:49 that once again tied the contest. With a two-man advantage, the Crunch pulled their goalie for a three-man advantage. It backfired after the Comets’ captain flipped the puck all the way down the ice into the empty cage tying the contest at 2-2. The Crunch used the following five-on-three goal to once again grab a one-goal lead when Mitchell Chaffee’s shot slipped through at 11:43. As the period ended, the Comets were down 3-2.

The Comets tied the game in the middle frame after a point shot by Topias Vilen tied the game at 3-3 at 1:28 for his first AHL goal. The goal was assisted by Parent and Graeme Clarke. It was the only tally in the second period and both teams went into the second intermission tied. 

The Crunch took the lead in the third when Jack Finley’s shot at 1:40 sailed passed Schmid. This lifted the Crunch to a 4-3 advantage. The Crunch scored with just a second left in overtime to skate away with a 5-4 decision by way of Joe Carroll. 

The Comets are back in action against the Belleville Senators on Wednesday night at home for a 7:00 PM puck drop.

Single-game tickets are now available for the 2023-24 season. Visit uticacomets.com/tickets for more information. Season Ticket Memberships are also available for the 2023-24 Season. Tickets are still available. Visit www.uticacomets.com/tickets for more information.

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