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Photo Credit: cory hergott

CanucksArmy Utica Comets Post-Game: Boucher Plays Gordie Howe, Jasek Bangs in a Pair As Comets Down Marlies 6-4

Utica Comets Post-Game Report

Game #26

Toronto Marlies at Utica Comets

Wednesday, December 11th, 2019

7:00 pm Eastern/4:00 pm Pacific

Pre-Game

Pre-Game Predictions From Twitter

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Post-Game

Scratched Today For Utica

  1. Wacey Hamilton: C/W – Upper-body injury, week-to-week. AHL deal.
  2. Dylan Blujus: RD – Lower-body injury, day-to-day. AHL deal.
  3. Mitch Eliot: RD –  Healthy scratch. NHL deal.
  4. Vincent Arseneau: LW/RW – Healthy scratch. AHL deal.

Comets Starting Lines

47 Sven Baertschi – 17 Seamus Malone – 24 Reid Boucher (A)

95 Justin Bailey – 9 Lukas Jasek – 13 Kole Lind

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77 Nikolay Goldobin – 19 Carter Camper – 27 Francis Perron

21 Jonah Gadjovich – 34 Carter Bancks (C) – 26 Dyson Stevenson

48 Olli Juolevi – 6 Ashton Sautner (A)

55 Guillaume Brisebois – 25 Brogan Rafferty

 4 Josh Teves – 3 Stefan LeBlanc

64 Mikey DiPietro

31 Zane McIntyre

First Period

The opening frame had a pretty decent pace and a bit of a physical edge at times and it would wrap up with each team scoring a goal.

Former Comets winger Darren Archibald was chomping at the bit as he had an early chance in a net-front scrum but Mikey DiPietro held the fort.

There was some early back and forth as Justin Bailey had a chance denied by Kasimir Kaskisuo before Jeremy Bracco went the other way for a chance but Ashton Sautner tracked him down before he could get his shot away.

Garrett Wilson, however, did get a shot away that DiPietro handled with the kick of his leg. At the other end, Guillaume Brisebois let fly with a shot that sailed wide of the net.

The Marlies came back the other way and DiPietro stopped a Bracco offering and smothered the puck with a scrum ensuing between Josh Teves and Kenny Agostino. Teves is doing his best to do the things that the coaches are asking of him out there.

We saw a new line of Lukas Jasek between Justin Bailey and Kole Lind last game and they looked promising with six points between them. They were back together today and looking to repeat that magic as Jasek used a cross-ice feed to Bailey for a shot that the speedy winger couldn’t get through.

It was the Marlies turn for a chance as Hudson Elynuik got by Brisebois for a chance but Guillaume was able to get back into position to stymie his play.

Ashton Sautner has been having a steady season and he unloaded with a shot from the high slot that was tipped off the target. Mason Marchment went the other way and came in off the right side with a chance that DiPietro shut down before the Comets rookie netminder came up with a big save on a backdoor play from Matt Read to Marchmnet.

Justin Bailey used a nifty move and some wheels to get by his man before feeding Lukas Jasek for a shot that was fought off by Kaskisuo. Jasek stayed with it and lifted a backhander past the Marlies netminder to put the Comets up 1-0. The goal was Jasek’s sixth of the season and fifth point in five games in December… so far. Justin Bailey earned his eighth helper of the year on the play while Kole Lind grabbed his 15th.

The Marlies were looking to get that one right back but Carter Bancks and Dyson Stevenson came up with a pair of timely shot blocks to foil that idea.

At the other end of the ice, Frankie Perron came up with a takeaway and fed Goldobin in close but Kaskisuo came up with a huge save. Carter Camper followed up with a one-timer that was also turned aside by the Marlies’ stopper.

Jasek came looking for his second of the game but Kaskisuo got a glove on his offering before gobbling up Rafferty’s chance off the right side.

At the other end, Marchment had a chance from the right circle swallowed up by a quick mitt from DiPietro.

Lukas Jasek was sent off for tripping at the 15:30 mark and the Comets had a penalty to kill with one of their better killers sitting in the box.

Boucher, Bancks, Juolevi, and Sautner started this one off and Boucher came up with a shot block before Bailey, Baertschi, Brisebois, and LeBlanc took over.

Former Comets forward Tanner MacMaster would stick it to his team again as he beat DiPietro for his seventh goal of the season to knot the game at two. Timothy Liljegren picked up his 10th helper of the year on the play, while Matt Read grabbed his third.

We had a little bit of back and forth as Sautner had a late backhander turned aside and the period wrapped up with the Marlies up 11-5 on the shot clock.

Your first-period shot map:

Second Period

Buckle up kids… this middle frame was a banger. We saw six more goals score between the two clubs in what was a special teams battle.

The Comets got some good pressure early from the Malone line before DiPietro came up with a save in the Comets end.

When I saw that Francis Perron was playing the wing today and that he was lined up with Goldobin and Camper, I figured he might be able to get off the schneid. Well, that he did when Goldobin found him all alone in front and he buried it. He will take it for his fifth tally of the season. Goldy, for his part, grabbed his 13th helper of the year on the play, as did Camper.

 

Lukas Jasek came looking for his second of the game… again, but Kaskisuo was there to swallow up his chance. Gadjovich tried his luck with a chance of his own that was denied and a brief melee broke out. The result of that melee was Gadjovich and Garrett Wilson heading off with fighting majors, while Ben Harpur was dinged for hooking and Dyson Stevenson was fingered for roughing.

We had some four aside play and that seemed to work in the Comets favour as they quickly made it a 3-1 game. This time it was Guillaume Brisebois with an absolute laser beam for his third of the season. Boucher picked up his 13th helper of the year on the play, while Brogan Rafferty continued to pile up assists with his 17th.

 

The Comets weren’t satisfied with a two-goal lead and before we knew what was happening, Lukas Jasek had buried his second of the game and seventh of the season after a nice play from Goldobin. Goldy picked up his 14th assist of the season on the play. Jasek did great work at the start of this play as well.

 

Jordan Schmaltz was sent off for a trip not long after and the Comets had a four-on-three power play to work with. Baertschi, Boucher, Bailey, Lind, and Rafferty started things off and we saw a Rafferty one-timer gloved down before Boucher had a chance swallowed up.

Kole Lind made it a 5-1 game at the 3:58 mark and this game was blown wide open. The goal was Lind’s seventh of the season as he took out the trash, while Baertschi picked up his 16th assist of the year and Rafferty collected his 18th.

 

Toronto called their timeout but elected to keep Kaskisuo in the game. The Marlies came out of their timeout and when play got back underway they rushed the Comets net. Darren Archibald was looking like he wanted to slap someone around, but couldn’t find a taker.

The Comets were keeping their foot on the throttle but the Marlies were pressing as well. Josh Teves came up with a nice play to shut down a Timothy Liljegren play attempt before Carter Bancks was dinged for hooking.

Jasek, Baertschi, Sautner, and Juolevi started off this kill and Jasek did nice work to break up a play and make the clear. Boucher, Bailey, Brisebois, and LeBlanc took over and we saw Bailey and Boucher make a mockery of the Marlies power play. The Comets came up with a good kill.

The Marlies kept it coming as DiPietro made a pad save and then dove across for another but Hudson Elynuik put his offering wide of the net.

At the other end, Goldy used a nice feed to set up Camper for a chance that was swallowed up by Kaskisuo. The Comets kept it coming and Goldy let fly with a shot off the arm of Kaskisuo before Tyler Gaudet tried his luck in the Comets end but DiPietro was there with the save.

It wasn’t long after that play when the Comets were dinged for having too many men on the ice and they were back to the penalty kill. Jasek, Bancks, Juolevi, and Sautner got things started before Boucher, Baertschi, Brisebois and LeBlanc took over.

Matt Read had a chance turned aside before DiPietro got his blocker on an Archibald offering. Try as he might, Mikey D was unable to stop the next chance from Archibald as he tipped a Liljegren offering and the former Comets forward pulled his team to within… three. The goal was Archibald’s sixth of the season, while Liljegren grabbed his 11th helper of the year and Jordan Schmaltz earned his ninth.

It appeared that the Marlies had scored again right away, but the goal was waved off and we saw Juolevi and Mason Marchmnet heading off with matching roughing minors instead.

With the teams operating at four aside, Rafferty ripped a shot off the iron and Brisebois followed up with a sliding play in his own end to foil a Matt Read chance.

The teams were barely back to five aside play when Marchment was sent right back off for roughing.

The Comets sent their first unit over the boards and Boucher had his chance from the right circle gloved down by Kaskisuo. Baertschi followed up with a chance that was tipped wide by Lind before Boucher had a one-timer denied. The Comets were getting some chances but Kaskisuo was there with the saves.

DiPietro had to come up with a blocker save on Teemu Kivihalme before the second unit of Goldobin, Perron, Camper, Gadjovich, and Juolevi took over. They were unable to make anything happen and the Comets power play came up empty.

The power play might not have been able to score, but the Comets were still pouring it on as Camper drove the net with the puck after a sweet set of moves but he couldn’t make anything happen. At the other end, DiPietro kicked aside a chance from Agostino for another save.

The physical play continued as Gadjovich crushed Rasmus Sandin before Dyson Stevenson was sent off for boarding at the 18:57 mark.

Jasek, Bancks, Juolevi, and Sautner started the kill and DiPietro had to come up with an early stop before Agostino fired one off the iron.

Garrett Wilson would get the Marlies back into it when he scored his sixth of the season with just two seconds remaining in the period. Agostino grabbed his 10th helper of the year with a nice passing play, while goaltender Kasimir Kaskisuo earned his first.

That was the end of the middle frame as the Marlies were forcing their way back into the game. Utica showed a 17-12 advantage on the shot clock for the second period.

Your second-period shot map:

Third Period

We only saw two more goals the rest of the way as each team would grab another, but it would be the Comets coming away with the win. We saw a couple of fights as well.

We had some early back and forth as DiPietro denied a Liljegren wrister before kicking aside the next chance that came his way as well. At the other end, Josh Teves sent a pass to Kole Lind for a point shot that was gloved down by the Marlies netminder.

That was when we saw our first tilt of the evening as Dyson Stevenson and Ben Harpur dropped the gloves and started to fire away on each other. Both men were sent off for fighting. Stevenson made his way to the room for repairs as he had sprung a leak, while Harpur went to the room with a beat-up mitt.

It took some stones for Stevenson to take that battle on as he stands six feet tall and tips the scales at a buck eighty-five. Harpur, for his part, is roughly the size of your average mid-60’s Buick.

With those two pugilists doing time, Nicholas Baptiste had a point shot gloved down by DiPietro, as did Kivihalme when he tried his luck. Elynuik came with a shot of his own and DiPietro turned it aside and stopped and held the wrister that followed.

The Marlies were pouring it on.

Olli Juolevi hasn’t played a ton of hockey over his past couple of seasons, but he is bringing his game to the table in Utica. He did nice work to take Agostino off the puck on a rush to the Comets net before more good work on Tyler Gaudet in the defensive zone.

Francis Perron was dinged for tripping at the 9:14 mark and it was back to the kill for Utica.

The usual four started things off before Boucher came out with Baertschi, Brisebois, and LeBlanc. Rasmus Sandin let fly with a shot off the post before we saw what might be the oddest pair of combatants square off for a brief tilt. It was Reid Boucher taking former Comets forward Tanner MacMaster to task for being a thorn in the side of the Comets all game. Give the decision to Reid.

Both men were sent off for fighting and the Comets came up with a good kill on the Perron minor.

Frankie must have been planning his attack from the box as he let fly with a hot shot off the rush that Kaskisuo gloved down before Marchment pulled the Marlies to within a goal with his first of the season. The tally was unassisted.

Kole Lind was rocked with an open-ice hit just inside the Comets blue line not long after the goal, but the winger was able to pop back up and get right back into the game. That has happened a few times to Kole this year.

The Marlies were pressing until Baptiste took an ill-advised slashing call at the 13:52 mark to send his team to the penalty kill.

The Comets started off with the second unit this time and Juolevi fired a bomb through traffic that Kaskisuo was sharp to stop before the first unit took over and Brogan Rafferty did this…

I guess piling up all of those points is giving Brogan a bit of swagger.

The Comets power play came up empty.

We saw a bit of a line juggle with Dyson Stevenson out of action for the time being as Lukas Jasek was taking a spin with Gadjovich and Bancks. Not long after, Mason Marchment was sent off for holding and the Comets were right back to the power play.

The first unit started things off and Bailey had a chance denied before a Boucher one-timer was turned aside as well. The second unit took over and Juolevi got a shot through traffic that was tipped wide before Goldy used a nifty play to get by his man and dish to Gadjovich for a pair of chances that Kaskisuo shut down.

The Comets were unable to grab a power-play marker, but they weren’t done scoring yet. The Marlies summoned Kaskisuo to the bench with 59 seconds remaining in the period and down a goal. Sandin tried his luck with a shot through traffic, but DiPietro was equal to the task and the Comets cleared the zone.

Reid Boucher put this one away with his 18th goal of the season into the empty net. Baertschi picked up his 17th assist of the year on the play, while Ashton Sautner earned his fourth.

That was it for this one as the Marlies held an 8-6 advantage in shots for the third period and a 31-28 advantage for the game but the Comets skated away with a 6-4 victory.

Your third-period shot map:

Today’s Official Boxscore

Comets Goals

  1. Lukas Jasek (6) from Justin Bailey (8) and Kole Lind (15).
  2. Francis Perron (5) from Nikolay Goldobin (13) and Carter Camper (13).
  3. Guillaume Brisebois (3) from Reid Boucher (13) and Brogan Rafferty (17).
  4. Lukas Jasek (7) from Nikolay Goldobin (14) and Kole Lind (16).
  5. Kole Lind (7) from Sven Baertschi (16) and Brogan Rafferty (18). PP goal.
  6. Reid Boucher (18) from Sven Baertschi (17) and Ashton Sautner (4). Empty net goal.

Special Teams:

Power Play: 1/4

Penalty Kill: 2/5

PP1: Boucher, Bailey, Baertschi, Lind, Rafferty. *Brisebois also saw time on the first unit when Boucher was serving his fighting major.

PP2: Camper, Perron, Gadjovich, Goldobin, Juolevi.

Penalty Killers: Jasek, Bancks, Boucher, Baerstchi, Bailey, Brisebois, Sautner, Juolevi, LeBlanc.

The Three Stars in the building today were:

3rd Star: Kole Lind.  One goal, two assists.

2nd Star: Reid Boucher. One goal, one assist, one fight.

1st Star: Lukas Jasek. Two goals.

CanucksArmy’s Three Stars:

3rd Star: Sven Baerstchi/Nikolay Goldobin/Brogan Rafferty/Kole Lind. I know, I’m jamming a lot of players into that third-star spot, but three grabbed a pair of points in this game and one picked up three and all are worthy of some props. Baertschi and Goldy continue to put up points while helping their linemates do the same. Sven is now up to 21 points in 14 games this year for Utica. Goldy, for his part now has 23 points in 20 games, while Kole Lind is up to seven goals and 15 assists, giving him 22 points in 26 games this season. Rafferty has played all 26 games so far in his rookie campaign and has tallied three goals and 18 assists to give himself 21 points.

2nd Star: Reid Boucher. Boucher finished the game with a goal, an assist, a fight and six shots on goal. He is now up to 18 goals and 13 assists, giving him 31 points in 21 games this year to take sole possession of first overall in AHL scoring. I’ve mentioned it in the past, but it isn’t all about points for Reid as he is one of the Comets top penalty killers and as witnessed today, he isn’t above dropping the mitts when the occasion calls for it.

1st Star: Lukas Jasek. Jazzy grabbed a pair of goals today, did great work on the penalty kill and formed one-third of a potent offensive line for the Comets with Kole Lind and Justin Bailey. Jasek’s two points today bring him to four goals and two assists in five December games. Lukas is now up to 11 points in 25 games and has become a staple on the Comets penalty kill this season.

What Does Twitter Think Of Another Sven Baertschi Recall?

I thought I would try something a little different today for fun and sent a post-game tweet about Sven Baertschi to see what kind of reaction it would get…

So… there we have it, your thoughts on Sven as an option going forward.

Next Game

Game #27

Bridgeport Sound Tigers at Utica Comets

Friday, December 13th, 2019

7:00 pm Eastern/4:00 pm Pacific