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 Rochester Americans

Amerks Point Streak Snapped in 7-3 Loss to Comets

February 18, 2024 - American Hockey League (AHL)
Rochester Americans News Release

(Rochester, NY) - Despite opening the scoring for the sixth straight game, the Rochester Americans (23-17-5-1) were unable to keep pace with the intrastate rival Utica Comets (20-20-4-3), who came away with a 7-3 win Sunday at The Blue Cross Arena.

Despite the loss, the Amerks, who entered the contest with at least one point in nine of their last 12 games dating back to Jan. 17, saw their five-game point streak come to an end. Rochester shows a 5-3-1-0 record through the first nine games of the season-series with Utica this season.

Forwards Tyson Jost and Brett Murray scored in the first and second periods, respectively, for the Amerks while defenseman Jeremy Davies also found the back of the net. Zach Metsa, Isak Rosen, Ethan Prow, and Lukas Rousek all added an assist to complete the scoring.

Devin Cooley (6-6-2) and Dustin Tokarski (7-7-2) split the goaltending duties with Cooley drawing the starting nod. Cooley, who appeared in his first contest since Jan. 26, finished with 23 saves, while Tokarski stopped three of four shots he faced in 13 minutes of relief.

Santeri Hatakka (1+1), Max Willman (1+1), Kyle Criscuolo (1+1), Graeme Clarke (1+1), Justin Dowling (0+2), Nolan Stevens (0+2) and Xavier Parent (0+2) all had multi-point efforts for Utica. Robbie Russo, Erik Middendorf, and Daniil Misyul each tallied a goal to complete the scoring.

Goaltender Erik Källgren (2-5-2) earned his first victory since Nov. 22, and second overall of the campaign. The Swedish netminder turned aside 29 of the 32 shots he faced to record the win.

Leading 4-3 to begin the final period, the Comets scored twice in less than a minute to build a three-goal advantage on Criscuolo and Middendorf's markers.

Middendorf's goal at the 7:07 mark of the frame was the first shot Tokarski faced.

Utica sealed the 7-3 win as Clarke finished off Criscuolo and Parent's feed after being left unattended in front of the Amerks net.

Midway through the first period of a scoreless game, Jost carried the puck into the Comets zone and played it to the left corner. As Graham Slaggert and Isak Rosen tied up a pair of Utica skaters, another Comet flung it towards center ice.

After Metsa retrieved the errant clearing attempt, he fed Jost with a pass inside the right circle before the latter roofed a backhanded shot under the crossbar to give the Amerks a 1-0 lead.

Utica, which outshot Rochester 14-7 in the first period, quickly took a 2-1 lead as Willman and Hatakka scored back-to-back goals 1:16 apart early in the middle frame.

While Davies finished off a Rosen backdoor feed at the 5:59 mark, Utica reclaimed its advantage on a pair of tallies from Misyul and Russo 72 seconds apart.

Prior to the completion of the middle period, Rousek attempted to hit Kale Clague with a cross-crease pass as he was streaking down the left wing, however, the pass was batted in the middle of the zone.

Prow followed the play and tucked it to Murray as he was to the left of the face-off dot inside the offensive zone. After his initial shot was blocked, Murray gathered his own rebound and converted on the second opportunity to bring the Amerks within one going into the final period.

Much like the first and second periods, Utica utilized a pair of quick goals in less than 60 seconds to increase its lead early in the final frame before Clarke sealed the 7-3 score.

The Amerks continue their grueling stretch as they travel north of the border to face the Toronto Marlies on Monday, Feb. 19 for a 2:00 p.m. contest at Scotiabank Arena. The North Division showdown will be carried live on The Sports Leader 95.7 FM/950 AM The Fan Rochester as well as AHLTV.

Stars and Stripes:

With Tyson Jost's first-period goal, the Amerks have scored 54 goals in the first period this season, which is the most goals the team has record in any period during the campaign ... Rochester has opened the scoring in six straight games dating back to Feb. 3 against Laval ... By adding a secondary assist on Brett Murray's second-period goal, Lukas Rousek has recorded a point in 19 of the last 23 games for Rochester, registering six goals and 17 assists dating back to Dec. 20.

Goal Scorers

UTC: M. Willman (10), S. Hatakka (4), D. Misyul (4), R. Russo (2), K. Criscuolo (10) , E. Middendorf (3), G. Clarke (19)

ROC: T. Jost (3), J. Davies (7), B. Murray (11)


UTC: E. Källgren - 29/32 (W)

ROC: D. Cooley - 23/29 (L) | D. Tokarski - 3/4 (ND)


UTC: 33

ROC: 32

Special Teams

UTC: PP (1/4) | PK (3/3)

ROC: PP (0/3) | PK (3/4)

Three Stars:

1. UTC - M. Willman

2. UTC - K. Criscuolo

3. UTC - N. Stevens

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