Utica, N.Y. – The Comets were unable to overcome an early deficit as they fell 4-3 to the Cleveland Monsters Friday night at the Adirondack Bank Center. Darren Archibald tied the Comets record for career goals with a power play goal in the second period in the loss.
Alex Broadhurst broke the scoreless tie halfway through the first period, beating Ivan Kulbakov top corner. Despite four power play opportunities, the Comets were unable to cash in and tie the game as they trailed 1-0 heading into the first intermission.
Zac Dalpe pushed the lead to 2-0 three minutes into the second period, converting on a back door play. Mark Letestu extended the lead to 3-0, tipping a shot past Kulbakov. The Comets responded two minutes later with a power play goal when Jonathan Dahlen chipped a loose puck past Jean Francois Berube. Zack MacEwen and Olli Juolevi picked up the assists. Archibald put the Comets within one with another power play goal, knocking a puck out of the air and into the net. Cam Darcy and Alex Biega tallied the assists.
Letestu blasted a one-timer past Kulbakov to put Cleveland up 4-2 six minutes into the third period. With Kulbakov off for the extra attacker, Reid Boucher put the Comets within with under two minutes to play. Despite furious efforts, the Comets were unable to find the equalizer and suffered their second straight loss.
Kulbakov finished with 20 saves and his record falls to 2-1-0 on the season.
The Comets are back in action tomorrow night when the hit the road to battle the Syracuse Crunch in Game One of the Galaxy Cup series. 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 AHLTV.