UTICA COMETS (29-14-10) vs. LEHIGH VALLEY PHANTOMS (33-14-7)
Adirondack Bank Center, 7 p.m.
Watch Live: AHL Live | Listen Live: 94.9 K-ROCK, Desktop or Mobile
Follow and Interact Live: Twitter | Hashtag: #LVvsUTI
Tonight’s Game: The Utica Comets take on the Lehigh Valley Phantoms for the final time this season. Puck drop is at 7 p.m.
Last Game: The Utica Comets defeated the Belleville Senators 5-4 Monday afternoon at Yardmen Arena. Tony Cameranesi, Zack MacEwen, and Reid Boucher struck in the first period to give the Comets a 3-0 lead. Ben Sexton and Nick Paul responded early in the second to cut the lead to 3-2. Wacey Hamilton restored the two-goal lead a minute later. David Dziurzynski put the Comets back up by three, potting a rebound with five minutes to go in the second. Sexton netted his second of the afternoon early in the final frame. Sexton completed the hat trick two minutes to go in regulation, but Richard Bachman would shut the door on the Senators from there. Bachman finished with 30 saves to improve his record to 10-7-4.
Head-to-Head: This is the final game between the Comets and Phantoms this season. Utica won the only meeting 3-2 in overtime back on January 27. The Phantoms lead the all-time series 9-3-1 and are 5-1-0 all-time in Utica.
Scouting the Phantoms: Lehigh Valley is 33-14-7 this year and sits in first place in the Atlantic Division. They are coming off a 4-1 win over Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Sunday. Phil Varone leads the offense with 51 points, followed by Greg Carey with 39 points. Dustin Tokarski leads all active goaltenders with a record of 13-5-5, a 2.94 goals-against average, and .911% save percentage.
On Fire: The Comets continue to climb the league standings thanks to their stellar play. Utica has won three games in a row and is 7-0-1 in the month of February. In addition, the Comets are riding a 16-game point streak. The streak is tied for the longest streak in the league this season.
Home Cookin’: On top of their 16-game point streak, the Comets have been hard to beat on home ice. Coming into tonight, Utica is riding an eight-game point streak at home. The Comets are outscoring opponents 24-17 during the point streak and have not lost in regulation since January 12 against Syracuse.
Streaking: Several Comets players are riding high coming into tonight’s game. Cole Cassels is on a four-game point streak, while Reid Boucher, Cam Darcy, Michael Chaput, and Zack MacEwen all carry three-game point streaks. Cassels (1-3-4) and MacEwen (2-2-4) have collected four points and Darcy (0-3-3), Chaput (2-1-3), and Boucher (1-2-3) have racked up three points during their respective streaks.
Brick Wall: Thatcher Demko continues to have a fantastic season for the Comets. Demko has won six of his last seven starts and is unbeaten in regulation in those seven starts. Demko has a record of 6-0-1 with a 2.20 goals-against average and .929% save percentage.
Next Game: The Comets are back in action on Friday night as they host the Laval Rocket. Puck drops at 7 p.m. Fans are encouraged to utilize the ticket exchange website, StubHub!. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHL Live.