Rochester, N.Y. – Richard Bachman made 43 saves and Michael Carcone scored twice as the Utica Comets defeated the Rochester Americans by a 5-4 final on Friday at Blue Cross Arena.
A high-paced first period needed just 2:24 for the night’s opening goal, as Brendan Gaunce redirected a pass from Tanner Kero that put the Comets on the board first. The Amerks knotted the game just over five minutes later when Wayne Simpson cashed in on a backdoor feed, and then took a 2-1 lead shortly thereafter with a power play strike from Danny O’Regan.
Earning an extended five-on-three advantage later on in the frame, the Comets roared back with two more of their own over a 29-second span. Zack MacEwen buried a rebound try after a shot from Jonathan Dahlen was stopped, then Michael Carcone’s seeing-eye wrister propelled Utica to a 3-2 lead.
Midway through the second, the Amerks tied the game with a shot by Jack Doughtery that pinballed from the point and into the net past an unsuspecting Bachman. Generating a lead six seconds before the break, Cam Darcy netted a shorthanded effort after a magnificent move that created space for a backhand finish.
The Comets established their first multi-goal lead of the game early in the third when Cam Darcy forced a steal and snapped a wrister into the top corner of the goal. Rochester clawed back to within a goal a few minutes later after a redirected shot landed on the tape of Sean Malone on the doorstep.
Bachman closed the door down the stretch with a flurry of late saves, helping to maintain the Comets’ lead into the final horn.