Utica, NY – Justin Bailey recorded his second straight and third hat trick in four games as the Comets topped the Hartford Wolf Pack 6-3 Friday night at the Adirondack Bank Center. Olli Juolevi, Kole Lind, and Carter Camper also added goals for Utica. Zane McIntyre made five saves on seven shots before being replaced by Michael DiPietro, who made 20 saves to earn the win.
Nick Jones struck first for Hartford 8:36 into the first period, beating McIntyre with a seeing eye shot from the point. Vinni Lettieri doubled the lead with a power play goal three minutes later. Lind cut the lead in half with 1:16 to go in the first, ripping a wrist shot over the glove of Tom McCollum.
Juolevi tied the game at two when the Comets broke in on a three-on-two rush and Reid Boucher fed the defenseman at the top of the circles and he fired a wrister to the top corner. Bailey gave the Comets their first lead of the night five minutes later, fighting through a number of stick checks before firing a shot past McCollum. Hartford responded a minute later when Shawn McBride capitalized on a loose puck in front and tied the game at three. Bailey scored again with 3:44 to go in the second, creating a turnover in the Comets’ offensive zone and burying a shot from the right circle.
Camper and Bailey added empty net goals in the final two and a half minutes to seal the win.
The Comets are back at it tomorrow night against the Cleveland Monsters. Puck drop at the Adirondack Bank Center is at 7 p.m. Tickets are still available at the Box Office, over the phone by calling (315) 790-9070, or online at www.empirestatetix.com. The game can be heard on 94.9 KROCK and viewed on AHLTV.