Crunch Snap Nine-Game Skid, Defeat Comets, 5-4
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - The Syracuse Crunch snapped a nine-game skid as they defeated the Utica Comets in a high-scoring affair tonight at the War Memorial Arena.
The Crunch came out quick with two power-play goals by Matt Taormina and Tye McGinn in the opening minutes. As the contest went on, Jeff Tambellini found the back of the net twice and Mike Blunden added a man-advantage marker. Four separate times, the Comets were able to pull within one, but they fell short and ended their eight-game point streak with a 5-4 loss to the Crunch.
The victory pushes Syracuse to 20-21-9-2 on the season. Despite the loss, Utica still controls the 10-game Galaxy Cup series, 4-2, and move to 25-18-4-3.
Crunch netminder Kristers Gudlevskis grabbed his ninth win of the season with a 25-save performance. Comets goaltender Richard Bachman stopped 26 of 31 in defeat. The Syracuse power play was highly effective, converting on 3-of-6 man-advantages. The team also successfully killed 6-of-7 Utica power plays.
The Crunch built up a 2-0 lead just 2:52 into the first period. Taormina netted one from the high slot before McGinn beat Bachman from down low. Blunden, Tanner Richard, Dylan Blujus and Yanni Gourde recorded points on the opening tallies.
With 4:52 remaining in the opening frame, Carter Bancks pulled the Comets within one off assists from Jon Landry and Travis Ehrhardt. The Crunch regained their two-goal lead two minutes later. Luke Witkowski fed McGinn, who fired from the right wing. The rebound was left out for Tambellini. However, Utica was quick to take it back when Ashton Sautner lit the lamp with 24 seconds remaining in the first.
The back-and-forth scoring continued in the second period. At the 2:34 mark, Tambellini one-timed Ryan Martindale's feed to put the Crunch up, 4-2. Again, the Comets were there to cut the lead, converting on the power play at 6:54. Andrey Pedan potted his fourth of the season with the help of Ronalds Kenins and Alexandre Grenier.
At the 2:33 mark of the final frame, Blunden redirected Adam Erne's pass from the right circle for the eventual game-winner. Richard made it a multi-point night with a secondary assist on the power-play goal.
The Comets tried to mount a comeback halfway through the third when Brandon Prust netted one shorthanded. The attempt was futile and the Crunch beat the Comets, 5-4.
The Crunch host the Rochester Americans tomorrow at 7 p.m.
Syracuse Crunch single game and season tickets are on sale now and can be purchased either in person at the Crunch Box Office located in the War Memorial at 800 South State Street in Syracuse or by calling the office at 315-473-4444. For the latest Crunch news, visit www.syracusecrunch.com or follow the club on Facebook (www.facebook.com/syracusecrunch), Twitter (@SyracuseCrunch) and Instagram (@officialsyracusecrunch) using #SyrCrunch and #BelieveInBlue.
• Discuss this story on the American Hockey League message board...
American Hockey League Stories from February 19, 2016
- Pirates Battle Back, But Fall to Americans - Portland Pirates
- High-Flying Affair Sees Penguins Fall to Marlies, 4-2 - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
- Crunch Snap Nine-Game Skid, Defeat Comets, 5-4 - Syracuse Crunch
- Griffins Drop First of Two-Game Set to Charlotte - Grand Rapids Griffins
- Akeson, Amerks Sink Pirates in Overtime - Rochester Americans
- Toronto Marlies Post Game Notes - Toronto Marlies
- Stolarz Shines (37 Saves) as Phantoms Double up Falcons 2-1 - Lehigh Valley Phantoms
- Rampage Drop Overtime Decision to Monsters 4-3 - San Antonio Rampage
- Chaput's Heroics Headline Monsters' 4-3 OT Win over Rampage - Cleveland Monsters
- Checkers End Skid in Grand Fashion, Beat Griffins 4-2 - Charlotte Checkers
- B-Sens Outlast IceCaps - Binghamton Senators
- IceCaps Shaded 2-1 by Senators - St. John's IceCaps
- Falcons Knocked off by Phantoms - Springfield Falcons
- Comets Point Streak Snapped in Syracuse - Utica Comets
- Condors Game Preview: Condors Riding Five-Game Winning Streak - Bakersfield Condors
- Hellberg, Wolf Pack Feeding off of Each Other's Confidence - Hartford Wolf Pack
- Amerks Hall of Fame Night Set for Friday, March 4 - Rochester Americans
- Rockford and Manitoba Return for Tonight's Sock Drive - Rockford IceHogs
- Pacific Division Leaders Collide Tonight as Reign Host Stars - Ontario Reign
- Iowa Returns Hoffman to Quad City - Iowa Wild
- Flames Recall Defenseman Tyler Wotherspoon from Stockton - Stockton Heat
- Ontario Reign Game Preview: Pacific Division Leaders Collide Tonight as Reign Host Stars - Ontario Reign
- Social Media Night, McCollum Bobblehead and Pennant Giveaway in Store for Griffins Home Weekend - Grand Rapids Griffins
- Sens Sneak Peak vs. St. John's - Binghamton Senators
- Moose Assign Jiri Fronk to Tulsa - Manitoba Moose
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.
Other Recent Syracuse Crunch Stories
- Tampa Bay Lightning Re-Sign Forward Ross Colton to One-Year Contract
- Tampa Bay Lightning Re-Sign Defenseman Ben Thomas
- Tampa Bay Lightning Sign Defenseman Andreas Borgman, Goaltender Chris Gibson
- Tampa Bay Lightning Re-Sign Goaltender Spencer Martin
- Tampa Bay Lightning Re-Sign Forwards Mitchell Stephens, Gemel Smith