Tonight's Game: The Comets look for their third consecutive win tonight as they face off against their divisional opponent, the Syracuse Crunch. The last time these two teams met was Syracuse and the Comets dropped a 6-3 decision. Since the Comets resumption of play after a hiatus due to league Covid protocols, these two teams met four times. The home team won each of those games giving them both a 2-2 record heading into tonight’s game.
Last Game: In Rochester on Friday night, it was a wild affair that saw 12 goals scored between the Comets and Americans with the visiting Comets skating away with two points after a 7-5 victory. Utica jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the game and never trailed by the Amerks never let up as they continued to make things interesting all night long. In his return from injury, goaltender Jake Kielly got the victory while forward Sam Anas not only scored his first goal of the season, he added another as well. Rookie forward Will Lockwood, who scored his first professional goal at home on Wednesday night last week also struck for two tallies against the Americans. Hugh McGing, Carson Focht and John Stevens all added goals on the night as the Comets won their second straight game after dropping two road games previously.
Scouting the Crunch: Forwards Boris Katchouk, Otti Sommpi and Taylor Raddysh are a dynamic trio for Syracuse as the team’s top forward line. Katchouk, the Crunch’s leading scorer, now has 26 points (10G, 16A) in 21 games this season. Sommpi and Raddysh both have 21 points this year in 22 games and 18 games played respectively. Sommpi and Katchouk are tied for the team lead in goals scored at 10. Katchouk is holding a 12 game points streak and has three points in each of his last two games. Raddysh is in the midst of a 10 game point streak and Sommpi has two goals in each of his last three games. Goaltender Spencer Martin was in the crease for the Crunch the last time out and was victorious 6-3 but the Comets mostly faced Samuel Montembeault in the Syracuse cage.
Anas Breaks Through: The former Quinnipiac forward finally scored his first goals of the season on Friday night in Rochester after going 12 games without a goal but accumulating 14 assists along the way. Anas struck for his first of the season when he roofed a shot past Rochester goalie Billy Christopoulous and then added another later in the game after he got a fortuitous deflection from a Rochester defenseman. Anas now leads the Comets in points with 16 (2G, 14A) in the 13 games this season.
Additions to the Roster: Most recently, the Comets added two player to their roster. Vancouver, as a reassignment from the Canucks taxi squad, sent defenseman Guillaume Brisebois to Utica after spending nine games with the Laval Rocket scoring one goal and one assist. Brisebois played the last three seasons with the Comets so he enters very familiar territory. Another addition is centerman Nikita Alexandrov who could make his North American debut against the Crunch. The second round draft pick of the St. Louis Blues in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft played 20 games this season in the SM-Liiga for KooKoo Kouvola scoring three goals and six assists in 28 games played. The 20 year old forward is a left shot who was born in Burgwedel, Germany.