Utica City jumped out to a 3-0 lead and never looked back as they rolled to a 6-3 victory over the Baltimore Blast Sunday afternoon in front of a sold-out crowd at the Adirondack Bank Center. Five different players scored for City and Andrew Coughlin made 15 saves in the win. Utica ends 2018 undefeated on home turf.
Baltimore owned possession in the first quarter, but it would be Utica that found the net first when Mauricio Salles banged home a power play goal 10:31 into the game. Slav Ubiparipovic and Joey Tavernese scored exactly one minute apart to push Utica’s lead to 3-0 late in the second quarter. The Blast had chances to score in the late stages of the first half but Utica held strong and took their 3-0 lead into halftime.
Adriano Dos Santos got Baltimore on the board 15 seconds into the third quarter with a long-range strike. Vini Dantas brought the Blast back within one 31 seconds later. Salles doubled Utica’s lead at the 4:12 mark of the third quarter, stripping a Baltimore player then finishing on the other end. Juan Pereira cut the lead to 4-3 with 3:49 to go in the third quarter.
Liam Callahan restored City’s two-goal lead two minutes into the fourth quarter, tipping a pass from Ubiparipovic after a nice run from Darren Toby. Utica survived a late penalty and Andre Braithwaite scored an empty-net goal with a minute to go to seal the win. Braithwaite sealed the win with a champagne toast to the fans.