UTICA COMETS (29-21-5-2) vs. HERSHEY BEARS (32-21-0-3)
Adirondack Bank Center, 7 p.m.
Watch Live: AHLTV | Listen Live: 94.9 K-ROCK
Follow and Interact Live: Twitter | Hashtag: #HERvsUTI
Tonight’s Game: The Utica Comets take on the Hershey Bears for the first time this season. Puck drop is at 7 p.m.
Last Game: The Comets surrendered a pair of third period goals in a 3-1 loss to the Rochester Americans Wednesday night at the Adirondack Bank Center. Reid Boucher scored the lone Comets goal, tying the Comets team record for most goals in a single season. Michael Leighton made 29 saves in the loss.
Head-to-Head: This is the first meeting between the Comets and Bears this season. The two teams split last year’s season series, with each team winning one game. Utica is 2-5-1-0 in the last five years against Hershey.
Scouting the Bears: Hershey comes in with a record of 32-21-0-3 and sits in third place in the Atlantic Division. They most recently topped the Hartford Wolf Pack 4-1 Wednesday night. Riley Barber is the leading scorer with 49 points, followed by Mike Sgarbossa with 47 points. Vitek Vanecek is the leading netminder with a record of 15-9-2, a 2.80 goal-against average, and .903 save percentage.
Conquering The Atlantic: The Comets have been fantastic against the Atlantic Division this season. Utica is riding a 10-game point streak against teams from the Atlantic, with their last regulation loss coming way back on November 17 at Hartford. They also have a four-game home point streak against Atlantic teams. The Comets have outscored opponents 36-26 during the streak and are 8-3-3 overall against teams from the Atlantic this season.
Like He Never Left: Zack MacEwen picked up right where he left off before being called up to Vancouver. MacEwen picked up an assist in his first game back to extend his point streak to three, picking up seven points (1-6-7). The second-year forward has 43 points (17-26-43) in 50 games this season.
Making History: Reid Boucher is writing himself into the Comets history books again. With a goal Wednesday night, Boucher tied his own team record for goals in a season with 25. He is also 11 points back of tying the team record for points in a single season. The forward has 51 points (25-26-51) in 45 games this year.
Power Outage: The Comets power play has struggled over the last five games. Despite notching a power play goal Wednesday night, Utica is 2-17 overall on the man advantage in their last five games. The Comets power play ranks 10th in the AHL at 19.9%
Next Game: The Comets are back at it tomorrow night against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Puck drop at the PPL Center is at 7:05 p.m. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHL TV.