Utica, N.Y. – After falling behind 3-1, the Comets rallied with two goals in the third to send the game to extra time and eventually topped the Hartford Wolf Pack 4-3 in a shootout on Purple Heart Military Night Friday at the Adirondack Bank Center. Zack MacEwen, Lukas Jasek, and Jonah Gadjovich all scored for the Comets. The goal was Gadjovich’s first AHL goal. Ivan Kulbakov stopped 34 shots to improve to 5-3-1.
The Comets dominated the opening 20 minutes but were unable to find the back of the net despite two power play opportunities, due in large part to Wolf Pack goalie Marek Mazanec.
MacEwen drew first blood seven and a half minutes into the middle frame, ripping a wrist shot past Mazanec. Jonathan Dahlen and Olli Juolevi picked up the assists. Tim Gettinger tied the game at one halfway through the second period. Ville Meskanen put Hartford up 2-1 four minutes later, tipping a shot over the shoulder of Kulbakov. Meskanen found the net again with 18 seconds remaining in the second period to put the Wolf Pack up 3-1.
Jasek put the Comets within one with five minutes to go in the third, converting on a centering pass from Tanner MacMaster. Ashton Sautner also tallied an assist on the goal. Gadjovich tied the game at three with a minute and a half to go to push the game to overtime. Brendan Woods and Juolevi had the assists.
Neither team found the net in overtime thanks to a stellar effort from Kulbakov making 10 saves in the extra frame.
Jonathan Dahlen and Michael Carcone scored in the shootout and Kulbakov stopped both shots he faced to secure the win.
The Comets are back in action tomorrow night when the hit the road to battle the Binghamton Devils. Puck drop at the Floyd L. Maines Memorial Arena is at 7:05 p.m. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHLTV.