COMETS, CRUNCH BATTLE IN THANKSGIVING EVE SHOWDOWNNov 27, 2019
UTICA COMETS (11-7-1-0) vs. SYRACUSE CRUNCH (10-6-2-0)
Tonight’s Game: The Utica Comets take on the Syracuse Crunch in Game Four of the Galaxy Cup series. Puck drop is at 7 p.m.
Last Game: Nikolay Goldobin scored a hat trick and Michael DiPietro made 41 saves as they led the Utica Comets to a 4-2 win over the Laval Rocket on Saturday at Bell Place. Jonah Gadjovich was the other goal scorer for the Comets.
Head to Head: This is the fourth meeting between the North Division rivals this season. Utica leads the season series 2-1-0-0 and won the most recent contest 5-2 back on November 15. The Comets have outscored the Crunch 12-7 through three games this year.
Scouting the Crunch: Syracuse comes in with a record of 10-6-2-0 and sits in fifth place in the North Division. They most recently beat the Hartford Wolf Pack 6-2 this past Saturday. Alex Barre-Boulet and Chris Mueller pace the offense with 15 points apiece. Scott Wedgewood is the leading netminder with a record of 6-2-1, a 2.90 goals-against average, and a .894 save percentage.
Fresh Face: The Comets will likely have a new face on the ice this evening. Forward Antoine Roussel is expected to be in the lineup tonight after being sent to Utica for a conditioning assignment. The veteran forward has skated in 478 career NHL games between the Canucks and Dallas Stars, recording 172 points (73-99-172). He has also tallied 36 points (13-23-36) in 146 career AHL games.
Perron The Money: Francis Perron has broken out of a slump in a big way. After going pointless in the first six games in November, Perron has responded with six points in his last five games, including a three-point night last Friday. It was his second three-point night this season. The forward has 14 points (4-10-14) in 17 games this year.
Welcome Back: Sven Baertschi will look to pick up where he left off before being called up by Vancouver. Prior to his callup, Baertschi recorded an assist in back-to-back games and was held without a point only once during his original seven game stint. He also recorded thee multi-point games during that stretch. The forward has 10 points (2-8-10) in eight games with Utica this season.
Just Killin’ It: After a bit of a rough patch, the Comets penalty kill is back on track. Utica has killed off 22 of their last 26 penalties over the last five games. Additionally, the Comets kill ranks third in the AHL on home ice at 91.3%. Overall, Utica ranks sixth in the league, killing off 87.5% of their penalties.
Next Game: The Comets are back in action Saturday afternoon on the road against the Toronto Marlies. Puck drop is at 1:30 p.m. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHL TV.