COMETS, CRUNCH THROWDOWN IN GAME EIGHT OF GALAXY CUPMar 6, 2019
UTICA COMETS (30-22-5-2) vs. SYRACUSE CRUNCH (35-17-3-2)
Tonight’s Game: The Utica Comets take on the Syracuse Crunch in Game Eight of the Galaxy Cup series. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. The first 1,000 fans through the doors will receive a Richard Bachman bobblehead.
Last Game: Zack MacEwen scored his 19th goal of the season, but it was all the Utica Comets could generate during a 3-1 loss on Saturday night at PPL Center. Marek Mazanec made 23 saves in the loss.
Head-to-Head: This is the eighth meeting between the North Division rivals this season. Utica leads the season series 4-3-0-0, but Syracuse won the most recent matchup 4-0 on February 1. The Crunch have outscored the Comets 29-17 through seven games.
Scouting the Crunch: Syracuse comes in with a record of 35-17-3-2 and sits in first place in the North Division. They most recently topped the Rochester Americans 4-1 this past Sunday. Carter Verhaeghe leads the offense with 64 points, followed by Cory Conacher with 53 points. Eddie Pasquale is the leading netminder with a record of 19-10-5, a 2.51 goals-against average, and .911 save percentage.
Big Mac: Zack MacEwen’s huge season continues. MacEwen is riding a five-game point streak, his third point streak of five or more games this season. His highest this season is six. He’s picked up 10 points (3-7-10) during this streak. The second-year forward has tallied 46 points (19-27-46) in 52 games with the Comets this season.
Milestone Watch: Michael Leighton is closing in on a huge accomplishment. Leighton is two games shy of 500 career AHL games, which would make him the eighth goaltender in league history to accomplish that feat. The veteran netminder has played for 13 different teams throughout his AHL career. Leighton is 8-4-0 this season with a 2.98 goals-against average and a .902 save percentage.
Power Surge: The Comets power play has been on a roll. Utica’s man advantage is operating at 33.3% over the last three games and have scored at least one power play goal in those three games. The Comets power play is ninth in the AHL this year at 20.2%.
Under The Radar: Evan McEneny is quietly having a strong season. McEneny has two points in his last three games and eight points (1-7-8 in his last 10 games. Additionally, he has tied his career high in goals and set new career bests in assists and points. The defenseman has 31 points (8-23-31) in 57 games this season.
Next Game: The Comets are back at it Friday night for a rematch against the Crunch. Puck drop at the Onondaga County War Memorial Arena is at 7 p.m. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHL TV.