Utica, N.Y. – Jake Kielly made 32 saves, Hugh McGing scored his first professional goal and the Utica Comets defeated the Rochester Americans 3-2 inside the Adirondack Bank Center in Utica, New York.
The Comets opened the scoring early when Josh Teves forced a turnover and fed a beautiful pass to McGing, who buried the puck past Rochester netminder, Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, at 17:24. Utica created several chances off of turnovers but were turned away by Luukkuneon. The comets were able to strike late in the first at off of Jonah Gadjovich’s team leading eighth goal of the year.
The Comets came out flying in the second period creating multiple scoring chances but couldn’t find the back of the net. It was Rochester who would tally the periods only goal when Jack Quinn fired a one-timer by Kielly at 5:48 to cut Utica’s lead to one.
Two minutes into the third period, Rochester knotted the game at two courtesy of Michael Mersch’s shot from the point. Both goalies stood tall, turning away shot after shot, to keep the game tied and force overtime
Rochester started the overtime frame on the powerplay forcing Kielly to make multiple highlight-reel saves. After five minutes of back-and-forth action the game needed to be decided by a shootout.
The shootout saw its first goal when McGing moved from his left to right and roofed a shot over Luukkenon. Rochester was able to keep the game alive in the third round after Jean-Sebastien Dea wristed a shot by Kielly. Things stayed tied up until John Stevens ended things in the fourth round as Utica earned the shootout victory.
The Comets return home Friday night as they face the Syracuse Crunch.