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Photo Credit: Cory Hergott

CanucksArmy Utica Comets Post-Game: The Comets Made It Interesting Late, But Fall 4-3 To Rochester

Utica Comets Post-Game

Game #16

Rochester Americans at Utica Comets

Saturday, November 16th, 2019

7:00 pm Eastern/4:00 pm Pacific

Pre-Game

Pre-Game Predictions From Twitter

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Injury News

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So, there’s also this…

Post-Game

Scratched Today For Utica

  1. Jonah Gadjovich: LW/RW – Upper-body injury, week-to-week. NHL deal.
  2. Carter Camper: C – Middle-body injury, no timeframe. AHL deal.
  3. Olli Juolevi: LD – Lower-body injury, no timeframe. NHL deal.
  4. Seamus Malone: C/W – Upper-body injury, no timeframe. AHL deal.
  5. Richard Bachman: G – Healthy Scratch. NHL deal.
  6. Stefan LeBlanc: LD – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.
  7. Tanner Sorenson: W/C – In transit. AHL deal.

Comets Lines

(First forward line/defence pair listed started the game. The remainder are listed in no particular order)

77 Nikolay Goldobin – 36 Wacey Hamilton – 24 Reid Boucher (A)

95 Justin Bailey – 9 Lukas Jasek – 13 Kole Lind

 18 Vincent Arseneau – 27 Francis Perron – 34 Carter Bancks (C)

4 Josh Teves – 14 Justin Taylor – 26 Dyson Stevenson

55 Guillaume Brisebois – 25 Brogan Rafferty

6 Ashton Sautner (A) – 5 Jalen Chatfield

8 Dylan Blujus – 52 Mitch Eliot

31 Zane McIntyre

64 Mikey DiPietro (backing up)

First Period

The opening frame was a solid one for the Comets as they would end up with a 2-1 lead by the time the buzzer sounded to end the period.

Nikolay Goldobin has been whipping out the moves and the playmaker’s mitts this year and he was at it again early on in this one. He pulled out the how’s she goin’ in the neutral zone to get by his man before dishing to Wacey Hamilton for a shot that was kicked out by the pad of Andrew Hammond.

Tage Thompson had a chance at the other end but his shot ended up being deflected out of play.

Francis Perron can be a bit streaky and luckily, he is currently at the start of one of those streaks. He picked up an assist yesterday when he sent the puck on a rope to Bancks for his goal and he used a similar play today to set up BigVinny for his fourth goal of the season. Perron grabbed his eighth helper of the year on the play, while Guillaume Brisebois earned his third.

Vinny was looking for another when he came right back with another shot that was denied by Hammond before Tage Thompson was whistled for holding and the Comets were off to the power play.

Trent Cull sent out Bailey, Goldy, Boucher, Lind, and Rafferty. Goldy finished off a sweet bit of passing from Bailey and Boucher for his fourth goal of the season. Boucher earned his fourth helper of the year on the play, while Bailey grabbed his fifth. The Comets had a two-goal lead.

The Comets were up 2-0 and the Amerks had yet to be credited with a shot on goal. Lawrence Pilut tried to remedy that but his offering was knocked down on the way to the net.

Jalen Chatfield came up with a nice takeaway in the neutral zone and helped send the Comets into the offensive zone but nothing came of the play.

Casey Nelson was the first to get a shot on McIntyre as he sent a point shot through traffic but the Comets netminder was equal to the task. Tyler Randell came next but saw his shot kicked aside by McIntyre.

Josh Teves was being deployed as a forward today with the Comets short-handed up front and the rookie defender showed some smarts to break up a Zach Redmond play at the Comets blue line.

William Borgen tried his luck with a shot that McIntyre was ready for and the score remained 2-0 for the home team. Reid Boucher went the other way with speed… yes, you read that right, and he blew by his man to get a shot away that was turned aside by Hammond.

The Amerks finally started to apply some pressure as Jacob Bryson had a chance kicked out by McIntyre before Redmond snuck a point shot through traffic past McIntyre for his second goal of the season. Pascal Aquin picked up his second assist of the year on the play, while Pilut earned his seventh.

The Amerks kept it coming as McIntyre had to come up with a save through traffic before the Comets went back the other way. Brisebois let fly with a shot that Boucher got a piece of but the puck went off the side of the net. Chatfield followed up by teeing up a one-timer for Boucher but Hammond gloved down the chance.

Ashton Sautner was dinged for holding at the 16:29 mark and the Comets were off to the kill. Hamilton, Bancks, Blujus, and Brisebois started things off and we saw McIntyre take a JS Dea offering off the shoulder. Blujus and Brisebois followed up with some timely shot blocks before McIntyre denied another wrister to keep his team up by a goal. Boucher came out along with Chatfield and this kill was wrapped up.

Brogan Rafferty had a late shot that he was able to sneak through traffic, but Hammond was there to kick it aside and the period came to an end. The Comets showed an 11-8 advantage on the shot clock for the opening frame.

Your first-period shot map:

Second Period

Well, the middle frame didn’t get off to a good start for Utica as Andrew Oglevie tied the game just 37 seconds in with his fourth of the season. Kevin Porter earned his fifth assist of the year on the play, while Brett Murray grabbed his sixth.

Ouch!

The Amerks kept pressing as the two clubs went back and forth and we saw McIntyre make a shoulder save on Sean Malone before Vinny Arseneau was sent off for tripping at the 2:05 mark. Hamilton, Bancks, Blujus, and Brisebois started the kill off and we saw Hamilton and Blujus nearly hook up for a shorthanded goal but Blujus tipped the Hamilton shot off target.

Jasek, Boucher, Sautner, and Chatfield took over and Brett Murray was denied by McIntyre on his net side chance. The Comets came up with a good kill.

Lukas Jasek is a puck possession machine and he did great work in the offensive zone, applying pressure that led to a Boucher chance in close. Hammond was there with another save. Arseneau followed up with a heavy point shot that sent a rebound halfway to Jupiter.

The lines started to go into the blender as the period went on and the coaching staff was looking for a spark. Goldobin took a spin with Hamilton and Stevenson for an odd-looking line.

Boucher has been known to bring a physical edge when he needs to and he used a solid shoulder to separate his man from the puck in the offensive zone but nothing came of the play that followed.

Casey Fitzgerald snuck a shot through traffic that McIntyre shouldered away before Justin Bailey had a chance kicked aside from in close at the other end. It was back and forth as Redmond fired from the high slot and McIntyre was ready with another save.

The Comets netminder had to be alert as he went out to play the puck, only to see it take an unfortunate bounce off a stanchion and head straight for his net. McIntyre was able to keep the puck from crossing the line and the game remained tied at two.

Casey Fitzgerald was sent off for hooking after he hauled Josh Teves down and the Comets were off to the power play.

Rafferty had a shot kicked aside before Goldy ripped one off the iron. Boucher followed up with a one-time chance that was off the target. The second unit took over and Mitch Eliot promptly took a hooking penalty.

The Comets did great work on this kill as Hamilton and Bancks put on a clinic before Jasek and Boucher took over up front. McIntyre gloved down and held a floater for the whistle before he stymied Nathan Paetsch on a point-blank chance. The Comets came up with a good kill.

Goldobin, Jasek, and Boucher tried to hook up on a late scoring play but were unable to make it happen and the period finished with the game tied at two. Rochester showed a 7-5 advantage on the second period shot clock.

Your second-period shot map:

Third Period

The final frame started off with some pressure from the Amerks as Chatfield showed some good body positioning to take his man off the puck in the defensive zone, forcing a turnover. Unfortunately, moments later, Sean Malone pounced on a loose puck and buried it for his fourth goal of the season. Eric Cornel picked up his second helper of the year on the play, while Dalton Smith grabbed his first.

The Comets now had a 3-2 hole to dig themselves out of.

Six seconds after the Malone tally, Dyson Stevenson and Shaw Boomhower decided to go for a canoe ride. Yes… the man’s name is really Shaw Boomhower. That is a name made for the fisticuffs. Both men were given the traditional five for fighting along with an extra two for tossing their buckets off before throwing down.

With the two men in the box, McIntyre had to make a pair of saves in quick succession on Pascal Aquin before Lukas Jasek was dinged for hooking at the 4:01 mark and it was off to the kill for Utica.

Justin Bailey and Reid Boucher might be two of my favourite penalty killers to watch this season as they tend to make shorthanded scoring chances happen. The duo was deployed as a pair and broke in for a shorthanded chance. Bailey dished to Boucher but Hammond came up with the save.

The Amerks were whistled for having too-many-men on the ice with a minute remaining in their man advantage and the teams were back to four aside play.

We saw some back and forth as Chatfield had a chance turned aside at one end and Tage Thompson watched McIntyre deny him at the other. When the Comets shifted over to their power play, we saw Boucher go end-to-end for a chance that he fired right into the guts of Hammond.

That was when Bailey was sent off for a questionable slashing call and we were back to four-on-four play. Boucher came looking for the tying goal but once again, Hammond had his number. The Comets shifted to the penalty kill and we saw McIntyre make a trio of saves before Boucher got his stick up and caused a leak. He was off to the box for a double minor and the Comets had four minutes to kill off, 23 seconds of which were at five-on-three.

The Amerks called their timeout to game-plan and rest their skaters and the Comets sent Hamilton, Bancks, and Chatfield over the boards to start the kill. That trio killed off the 23 seconds and the teams were at five-on-four play. Chatfield came up with a good play to break up an Amerks opportunity and cleared the puck out of the Comets zone.

Justin Bailey used his wheels to go for a skate and found himself in a scoring lane but fired his shot off the target. Jasek and Bancks took over and the Amerks scored their fourth of the game to pull ahead by a pair.

Casey Nelson did the damage with his third of the season, beating McIntyre through traffic. Jacob Bryson grabbed his sixth helper of the year on the play, while Brett Muray earned his seventh.

The Comets were still a man down and we saw Goldobin getting some penalty killing time late. Goldy has shown more engagement away from the puck in his last few outings and has looked better on that side of things of late. The Comets would end up killing this penalty off.

The play started to get a little chippy in the late going as the game went back and forth. Dalton Smith had a chance gloved down and held by McIntyre before Hammond turned aside a Kole Lind offering at the other end of the ice.

Mitch Eliot followed up by putting a puck on the net for a rebound chance but Hammond scooped up the puck and held for the whistle.

Bailey followed up with a chance from in close but couldn’t get enough of the puck to make anything happen. Brisebois did great work to hold the puck in at the line and put a shot on the net that Hammond steered aside with the wave of his blocker.

Trent Cull summoned McIntyre to the bench with three minutes remaining on the clock and Hammond immediately went for an empty-net goal. He would have gotten away with it too if it weren’t for those pesky kids… Wacey Hamilton played the part of those pesky kids when he raced down the ice and just managed to swipe the puck off the goal line before it crossed.

The Comets were putting on the pressure but were unable to make anything happen. The Amerks weren’t giving up either as they ripped a shot off the iron and the Comets called their timeout.

Whatever they discussed seemed to have an effect as Brogan Rafferty soon had his second goal of the season after banging in some garbage. Boucher picked up his second helper of the game and fifth of the year on the play, while Wacey Hamilton grabbed his third.

It was too-little-too-late for the Comets as they ran out of time. They finished the period with a 12-7 edge in shots and held a 28-22 advantage for the game but came up on the wrong side of a 4-3 loss.

Your third-period shot map:

Today’s Official Boxscore

Comets Goals:

  1. Vincent Arseneau (4) from Francis Perron (8) and Guillaume Brisebois (3).
  2. Nikolay Goldobin (4) from Reid Boucher (4) and Justin Bailey (5). PP goal.
  3. Brogan Rafferty (2) from Reid Boucher (5) and Wacey Hamilton (3).

Special Teams:

Power Play: 1/3

Penalty Kill: 6/7

PP Units:

Goldobin, Boucher, Bailey, Lind, Rafferty

Perron, Jasek, Arseneau, Eliot, Brisebois

Penalty Killers: Bancks, Hamilton, Boucher, Bailey, Goldobin, Jasek, Sautner, Brisebois, Chatfield, Blujus.

The Three Stars in the building today were:

3rd Star: Vincent Arseneau. One goal.

2nd Star: Sean Malone. One goal.

1st Star: Brett Murray. Two assists.

CanucksArmy’s Three Stars:

3rd Star: Brogan Rafferty. Rafferty played another solid game today and added to his point totals with his second goal of the season. The rookie blueliner now has two goals and seven assists, bringing him to nine points in 16 games this year. That puts him on pace for 42.8 points this season. Bobby Sanguinetti currently holds the Comets single-season record for points by a blueliner with 40. Not bad Brogan, keep doing what you’re doing.

2nd Star: Nikolay Goldobin. Goldy has been having a nice season offensively for Utica, so some of you might be wondering why he hasn’t shown up all that often in my three-star selections. That is mostly due to the fact that I expect him to produce points at an elite rate in the AHL. He’s been there, done that. I have been wanting to see him showing more engagement away from the puck with more consistency and that is starting to happen over his last few contests. If he can continue to play with that kind of passion, he will be putting himself back into the call-up conversation.

1st Star: Reid Boucher. Boucher picked up a pair of helpers today and is now up to 13 goals and 18 points in 11 games. That is ridiculous production no matter how you slice it. Nobody can question Reid’s work ethic or passion for the game. He brings it every night. He’s an all situations player for Trent Cull and plays a pretty complete game. It isn’t all about the offence for Boucher, although, let’s face it, he is very, very good at piling up points. Reid was credited with 10 shots on goal in today’s contest.

Next Game

Game #17

Binghamton Devils at Utica Comets

Wednesday, November 20th, 2019

7:00 pm Eastern/4:00 pm Pacific