Tag Archives: Alex Friesen

Utica Comets are still Hanging In There: Comeback Shootout Victory

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Some how, some way, the Utica Comets are still alive.

Down 2-0 with eight minutes to play, the Comets came back on goals by Jeremy Welsh and Cal O’Reilly (pictured above), played through a scoreless overtime, went into a shootout without their top scorer and got four saves from Joe Cannata and goals from Alex Friesen and Brandon DeFazio to down the Lake Erie Monsters 3-2 Friday.

A crowd of 12,386 watched the game at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. It was the 44th one-goal game for the Comets and 20th that has gone to overtime or beyond.

The Comets, who also defeated the Monsters 3-2 Thursday on Pascal Pelletier’s overtime goal – the teams have met eight times this season and have played seven consecutive 3-2 games, with the Comets winning five of them – stayed alive in the race for the eighth and final American Hockey League Western Conference playoff spot. The Comets are 33-30-5-4 for 75 points and can climb within two points of a berth depending on the outcome of the Oklahoma City at Abbotsford game late Friday.

The Comets, Rochester, Oklahoma City, Charlotte and Rockford all remained in the running for the final berth as of late Friday.

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OOOPS! Utica Comets Blew A Big Lead, At The Wrong Time

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The Utica Comets blew a 5-2 lead in a span of 46 seconds over the last minute and a half of regulation, then Brett Connolly scored at 2:36 of overtime as the Syracuse Crunch pinned a devastating, 6-5 loss on them Saturday at the Onondaga War Memorial.

The collapse seriously injured but did not end the Comets’ desperate hopes to make the American Hockey League playoffs. They are four points out of playoff position with seven games to play, including at 3 p.m. Sunday in Toronto.

Alex Friesen scored two goals for the Comets, and Cal Reilly and Patrick Kennedy scored the others. Alex Biega had two assists, and Welsh, Friesen, O’Reilly and Kellan Lain an dYann Sauve also had assists. Joacim Eriksson made 25 saves for the Comets.

The Comets, who played without defenseman Frankie Corrado after he was recalled to Vancouver late Friday, also have road games at Lake Erie Thursday and Friday and at Adirondack Sunday before finishing the regular season at home against Rochester April 16, Toronto April 18, and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton April 19.

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WOW! Utica Comets Take Down Toronto Marlies 5-1

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Pascal Pelletier (pictured above) got the first of 5 goals.

To some eyes, the Utica Comets were flat as a pancake.

They trailed the Toronto Marlies 1-0 after the first period, had been outshot 9-3 and had definitely gotten the worst of the territorial battle.

“We weren’t really flat, but we needed a little energy,” Pascal Pelletier said.

They got it early in the second period, when Darrren Archibald traded some big, heavyweight punches with Toronto’s Brad Staubitz, and Alex Mallet dropped the gloves with the Marlies’ Brad Ross just a couple of minutes apart.

“It got the boys going and it got the crowd going, and we got the train rolling,” said Pelletier, who played a large role in the whole thing.

The Comets suddenly ripped off five goals in 13 and half minutes, rumbling to a 5-1 victory over the Marlies before a nominal sell-out crowd of 3,815 – there were quite a few empty seats – Friday at the Utica Memorial Auditorium, keeping their flickering American Hockey League playoff hopes alive.

It was the first game in a third straight three-in-three weekend for the Comets, who head up the road to Syracuse to play the Crunch today, then immediately leave for Toronto to play the Marlies again at 3 p.m. Sunday. Utica (31-29-4-4, 70 points) trails Charlotte, which holds the last Western Conference playoff berth, by five points, is four points back of Rochester and three behind Oklahoma City, and has a game in hand on all of those teams.

Pelletier scored on the power play and shorthanded to cap Utica’s explosive second period run, and Frankie Corrado, Brandon DeFazio and Alex Friesen scored the other goals. Kellan Lain had two assists for the Comets, Friesen, Henrik Tommernes, Alex Biega, Jeremy Welsh, Alexandre Grenier and Cal O’Reilly had the others, and Joacim Eriksson made 21 saves.

Friesen, the Comets’ small – he is listed at 5-foot-10, 186 pounds, which most would say is generous – and highly energetic forward, had another good night playing with Lain and Welsh. He thought the Comets did a much better job of managing the puck and keeping the Marlies in their end in the second period – Utica had a 14-6 shot bulge – but agreed that Archibald and Mallet played big parts as well.

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