GLENS FALLS, N.Y. - The Utica Comets once again could not mount a third period comeback, as they dropped their third straight game, this 3-1 to the Adirondack Phantoms at the Glens Falls Civic Center. The Comets were in search of their sixth win in seven tries away from home, but a 2-0 hole midway through the second period proved to be too much for Utica to overcome.
Darren Archibald was the lone Utica goalscorer, as his unassisted tally in the second period proved to be all the Comets would muster offensively. Joe Cannata turned away 26 of 29 shots against as he lost his second start in a row.
The first period saw the Comets go without a shot on goal for the first 11:48 before Kent Huskins finally broke the drought. Cannata turned aside all four shots he faced, behind a defensive effort that led to the least amount of shots the Comets have allowed all season during a single period. Cal O’Reilly had the period’s best chance as he found himself all alone in front off of a Nicklas Jensen feed, but the veteran center couldn’t beat Cal Heeter, who finished the game with 18 saves.
The Phantoms opened the scoring just 2:49 into the second as Ben Holmstrom buried a rebound in front of the Utica net, which sparked a massive influx of teddy bears onto the ice. Cannata turned aside attempts from both Rob Bordson and Chris VandeVelde, but the third shot proved to be the charm as the Adirondack captain put home the game’s first goal.
Kris Newbury doubled the lead almost ten minutes later, as he finished off a nice feed from Jason Akeson on a 3-on-1 rush. Newbury’s goal, which came on the power play, was the product of a nice passing play on an outnumbered Utica defense. The goal was Newbury’s fifth of the season and Akeson extended his team lead in assists, with his 13th helper of the season.
The Comets answered back with less than six minutes to play in the second as Darren Archibald buried his third goal of the season. Archibald drove to the net to pick up his own rebound and forced the puck over the goal line to cut the Phantoms’ lead in half.
Adirondack scored an insurance goal at the 12:03 mark as Akeson poked home a loose puck in front for his team’s third of the night. Cannata got a piece of a Brandon Manning point shot, but the Merrimack graduate could not hold on and Akeson put it home for his second point of the night.
The Comets fell to 6-13-1-1 with the loss. Utica is next in action next Friday for Clinton Comets Appreciate Night at The AUD. The Comets will host the Binghamton Senators as they honor the history of the Comets name. Puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m.