Utica, N.Y. – The Utica Comets jumped out to a 3-0 lead but were unable to hold on as they fell to the Rochester Americans 4-3 in overtime Friday night at the Adirondack Bank Center. Tanner Kero, Reid Gardiner, and Guillaume Brisebois scored for Utica. Ivan Kulbakov stopped 32 shots in the loss.
The two teams played at a feverish pace in the first period, but even with two power plays apiece, the game remained scoreless after the first period.
Kero got the scoring started 56 seconds into the second period when he stripped an Amerks defender and buried a feed from Reid Boucher. Gardiner doubled the lead a minute later after a great individual effort, stealing the puck and firing a wrister past Amerks netminder Scott Wedgewood. Brisebois continued the onslaught at the 7:09 mark of the period with a shot that trickled through Wedgewood. Kyle Thomas and Vincent Arseneau tallied the assists.
Victor Olofsson got Rochester on the board with a power play goal with 7:36 to go in the middle frame. Wayne Simpson cut the deficit to one on a breakaway with five minutes later. Remi Elie tied the game at three with another power play goal a minute later.
Each team quality chances in the third period, but Wedgewood and Kulbakov held strong and sent the game to overtime.
Zach Redmond scored a power play goal 38 seconds into overtime to give Rochester the win.
The Comets are back at it tomorrow night against the Binghamton Devils. Puck drop at the Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena is at 7:05 p.m. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHL TV.