The Utica Comets could not complete the weekend three-in-three sweep and were dropped by the Hershey Bears 5-1 on at the GIANT Center Sunday night.
Alexandre Grenier (1-0-1) scored on the power-play, for the Comets only goal of the evening, while Richard Bachman made 29 saves in the loss. Ronalds Kenins collected an assist on the Comets goal to extend his point-scoring streak to five games, and has run his point total to 11 points in his last nine games.
It took almost 19 minutes, 18 combined shots, and several highlight-reel worthy saves from Richard Bachman before the game’s first goal to be scored. The Bears were the ones to strike first when Nathan Walker scored his 13th goal of the year after he emerged from the corner with the puck.
The Bears doubled down on their lead when Travis Boyd tapped in a back door, cross-crease pass, from Jakub Vrana just 52 seconds into the second period. Chris Bourque picked up a secondary assist to become the first player to 60 points this season.
A little over the halfway mark of the game Grenier found his 10th goal of the season, and second goal in as many nights. Kenins streaked across the top of circles and ripped a wrist shot on net after he received a pass from Taylor Fedun. Grenier, as he battled with two Bears defenders, redirected the shot under the arm of Dan Ellis for the power-play goal.
51 seconds later the Bears re-established their two goal lead thanks to Riley Barber. For the third time this evening, a Bears forward capitalized on a back door pass after Walker connected with Barber. The lead was stretched to 4-1 when the American Hockey League’s leading point-scorer slipped a shot past Bachman for his 24th goal of the season.
Zach Sill scored 10:45 into the third period for the Bears to cap off the game’s scoring.
With the loss the Comets record drops to 27-19-5-3 on the season, and 0-3-0-0 against the Hershey Bears.
The Comets are off until Friday night when the league-leading Toronto Marlies visit The AUD. Puck drop is scheduled for 7pm.