UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – The Utica Comets hosted the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Tuesday in an abbreviated game, a resumption of their matchup against the Penguins that had started 99 days earlier, on October 17th, Utica’s home opener. Power was lost at the Aud that game and couldn’t be restored, forcing the league to postpone the remainder of the game to Tuesday, when Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was already scheduled to be in upstate New York, facing the Rochester Americans on Wednesday the 25th.
Tuesday the teams picked up where they left off, 22 minutes and change left in the game, with Utica on the penalty kill, leading by a goal. They played the remaining 2 minutes and 43 seconds of the second period, capped by a Robbie Russo goal with .9 seconds left to put Utica up 3-1. This was Russo’s second point in the game, he had the primary assist on the Comets’ second goal in October.
Utica and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton then went to the benches for the “second intermission,” although there was no ice resurfacing before the “third period,” began.
Nolan Stevens added an empty-net goal with 1:39 remaining in the game to make it 4-1 and a lucky deflection got past the Penguin goaltender off the stick of Jack Dugan 17 seconds later in the game to reach the eventual final score of 5-1.
The three stars for the game included a sight that some may never have seen, both goalies from the winning side being deservedly listed. Nico Daws the starting goaltender on October 17th, going 19 for 20 on save opportunities and being named first star, and Akira Schmid finishing out the game on Tuesday with a 10-save shutout to secure the victory.
Going in, Utica sat in second place in the North Division behind Toronto, five games behind the Marlies but two games ahead of Syracuse, the third-place team. The Crunch were off Tuesday night, so a win moved the Comets another two standings points ahead, now three games up with the Crunch only two games behind in games played.