The Utica Comets (27-27-3-4) were in Abbotsford this past weekend where they split a pair of games with the Heat. With just 15 games remaining, the Comets need to make up eight points to find themselves in a playoff spot.
Friday, March 14: Abbotsford Heat 3 – Utica Comets 1
-Alexandre Grenier (16) scored the lone-goal for the Comets in his first game back from injury, but it was too little, too late as the Comets dropped a 3-1 decision, snapping their four-game winning streak.
-Cal O’Reilly and Pascal Pelletier had assists on Grenier’s power-play marker.
-Joacim Eriksson stopped 33 of the 35 shots he faced between the pipes for the Comets, earning second star of the game honours.
Alex Friesen dropped the mitts for the second time this season as he took on Heat forward Josh Jooris in a second period scrap. Friesen’s last fight came back in January, also in Abbotsford.
-Brandon DeFazio led all Comets players with five shots on goal.
-Final Shots: Heat 36 – Comets 28
Saturday, March 15: Utica Comets 3 – Abbotsford Heat 1
-Colin Stuart (14, 15) scored twice as the Comets got back in the win column with a 3-1 victory over the Heat on Saturday.
-Brandon DeFazio also tallied for the Comets, his 12th of the season.
-Joacim Eriksson made 38 saves in the game, 28 of those over the final 40 minutes, which earned him first star of the game honours.
-Alex Friesen finished the night with two assists, giving him five points (2-3-5) in his past five games.
-Kent Huskins, Cal O’Reilly, Yann Sauve and Henrik Tommernes all had one assist apiece.
-DeFazio led the shot department for the second straight game with five on the night.
-Tommernes led all skaters with a plus-3 rating.
-Final Shots: Heat 39 – Comets 34
Comet of the Week
After one of his worst performances of the season last Saturday night, Joacim Erksson rebounded with two solid starts on consecutive nights in Abbotsford. On Friday, Eriksson turned aside 33-of-35 shots fired his way in a 3-1 loss (empty-netter), before turning in a 38-save performance in Saturday’s 3-1 win. The product of Gavle, Sweden had a .960 save-percentage over the weekend, improving his season average to .916 to go along with his 2.52 goals-against average and four shutouts, which has him tied for second spot in the AHL.
The Comets kick-off their first of three straight three-game in three-night weekends as they host the Adirondack Phantoms (24-32-1-4) on Friday before hitting the road for a Saturday night test against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (34-20-3-5). Utica finishes off the weekend with a home game against the Milwaukee Admirals (29-20-6-6) on Sunday.