Utica, NY – The Utica Comets defeated the Toronto Marlies by a score of 3-1 on Friday night at the Utica Memorial Auditorium.
On the second power play of the night, Joseph LaBate deflected a Colby Robak shot for his sixth goal of the season at 12:09. Chad Billins also assisted on the first goal of the night. Thatcher Demko stopped all six shots in the first period, all of which in the first eight minutes.
At 7:02 of the second period, Cody Kunyk sent in a pass from Darren Archibald for his 15th of the year. After a scramble in front of the net, Kunyk extended the Comets lead with another power play strike. Alexandre Grenier was credited with the secondary assist. Two minutes prior to the goal, Archibald missed on a penalty shot attempt against Garret Sparks. The momentum carried throughout the period as the Comets took a 2-0 lead into the third period.
Mike Sislo tallied the lone Marlies goal with his 13th of the year on a one-timer at 6:52 of the third period. Brendan Leipsic and Seth Griffith registered the assists. Toronto continued the barrage of shots after three power plays in the final frame. Sparks was also pulled for the extra attacker in effort to tie the game. Wacey Hamilton scored in the vacant net for his career-best ninth goal of the season. Borna Rendulic assisted on the goal with 56 seconds left.
Demko finished the night with 25 saves to improve his record to 22-14-4. Sparks made 19 saves and dropped to a record of 20-8-0. The Comets converted on two of six power plays and killed six of seven penalties.
The Comets are back in action tomorrow night at the Blue Cross Arena against the Rochester Americans. Faceoff is slated for 7:05 p.m. and the game can be heard live on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHL Live.
For the latest Comets news visit www.uticacomets.com or follow the team on Facebook (www.facebook.com/uticacomets), Twitter (@UticaComets), Instagram (@UticaComets), Snapchat (@UticaComets) and the Comets YouTube Channel.