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Comets Defeat Crunch in Successful Home Opener

February 17, 2021 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Utica Comets News Release

Utica, NY - Jonah Gadjovich scored two goals and Jon Gillies made 17 saves in a 5-2 victory over the Syracuse Crunch. Utica started the scoring early in the game after Gadjovich redirected a Will Lockwood shot passed Syracuse goaltender Sam Montembeault at 14:50 of the opening period.

In the middle frame, Utica extended their lead after Steve Santini shot from the blueline fooled Montembeault at 10:08. With the Comets on the powerplay, Sam Anas put a pass right onto the tape of Nathan Walker who extended the Comets lead to 3-0 at 14:00.

Dakota Joshua scored a highlight reel goal on a two-on-one rush as he skated through the Syracuse defense and made a nice move around the Crunch goaltender to slide the puck passed the goal line at 4:13. While the Crunch added goals from Jimmy Huntington and Dmitry Semykin to pull within two goals, it wouldn't be enough and Gadjovich added an empty netter to help the Comets skate away with a 5-2 win. Rookies Tyler Tucker, Will Lockwood and Hugh McGing all tallied their first professional points tonight. Steve Santini, Nathan Walker and Dakota Joshua all scored their first goals as Comets.

Both teams scored one goal on the power play. Utica outshot Syracuse 20-19 on the night. The Comets will head to Rochester tomorrow for a game against the Americans in a rematch from the season opener. The Comets are now 3-1 on the season in four games.

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