COMETS VISIT PROVIDENCE TONIGHTJan 13, 2017
UTICA COMETS (13-16-6) vs. PROVIDENCE BRUINS (21-8-7)
Dunkin’ Donuts Center, 7:05 p.m.
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Tonight’s Game: The Utica Comets faceoff against the Providence Bruins for the third meeting this season, the first away from the AUD.
Last Game: Thatcher Demko and Kristers Gudlevskis were solid in the first period as the teams skated in the second period looking for the first goal. Alexandre Grenier gave the Comets a 1-0 lead at 4:34 of the second frame. His 12th of the season was assisted by Curtis Valk and Darren Archibald.
Mike Halmo tied the game in the third period to force an overtime period. Archibald ended the game with his third overtime winner of the season to give the Comets a 2-1 win. Valk and Demko assisted on the goal.
Head-to-Head: The Bruins defeated the Comets in the two meetings this season by scores of 4-2 and 3-1. Sean Kuraly leads the season series with three assists. No Comets player has collected more than one point against the Bruins this year.
Scouting the Bruins: The Bruins have lost just two games in regulation since November 12, this includes the current streak where the team has won eight of the last nine games. In the 23 games since November 23, the Atlantic Division foe has gone 17-2-4. Wayne Simpson leads the Bruins offensively with 25 points (11 goals and 14 assists). Defenseman Alex Grant is one point behind Simpson possessing seven goals and 17 assists. The AHL’s save percentage and goals against leader, Zane McIntyre, was recently promoted to the Boston Bruins. Anton Khudobin has won back-to-back games in goal, including a 21 save shutout on Sunday against Hartford.
Gren and Bear it: Alexandre Grenier takes a five-game goal streak into tonight’s game. It is the longest streak in his professional career including ECHL and Austria games. The former third rounder by the Canucks has totaled 29 points (12 goals, 17 assists) in 33 games this year.
Backstoppers: Thatcher Demko and Richard Bachman have combined to become a viable force in net for the Comets. Bachman has not allowed more than three goals in his last four starts, dating back to November 19. Demko has posted back-to-back wins where he has made 66 saves on 69 shots, totaling a 95.7 save percentage.
Wins a Comin’: The Utica Comets shook the nine-game winless drought last Friday and have won three of four since. The Comets have also collected points in five of the last seven contests going 3-2-2.
On the Road Again: Utica begins a five-game road stand in Providence tonight. The trip will take the team to Bridgeport, St. John’s and Syracuse. It is the second longest road trip of the year. From March 18 – March 31, the team will be on the road for six games.
Next Game: The Comets continue the road trip with a 7 p.m. battle against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers tomorrow night at the Webster Bank Arena.