Utica Comets vs Syracuse Crunch preview

The Comets and Crunch will face-off against each other for the third time this season.

The Syracuse Crunch and the Utica Comets will meet in a matinee game on Thursday, November 11th at the Adirondack Bank Center in Utica. The game will start at 3:00pm and the Comets will be honoring America’s veterans throughout the day as part of the teams Veterans Day celebration.

The Comets are currently in first place in the AHL North Division with a 7-0-0-0 record. The Crunch enter the game in fifth place in the AHL North with a 5-4-1-0 record. The teams have played each other twice already, with the Comets winning both games. This will be first time the Crunch and Comets play in Utica this season.

The Utica Comets have recently gone through some roster changes, as forwards Tyce Thompson and Jesper Boqvist were recalled by the New Jersey Devils. In their place, the Devils reassigned Frederik Gauthier and Marian Studenic to the Comets. At the time of their recall, Boqvist and Thompson were second and third respectively on the Comets in points. Chase DeLeo currently leads the team in points with twelve, now followed by Fabian Zetterlund with six.

The Utica Comets celebrate a victory at the Adirondack Bank Center. Photo credit: Scott Kinville.

A big part of the Comets undefeated start has been the solid goaltending the team gets from Nico Daws and Akira Schmid. Daws has four wins to go with a 2.26 GAA and .933 save percentage. Schmid has been spectacular as well, posting three wins along with a GAA of 1.31 and a save percentage of .953. Daws is tied for third in the AHL in wins, while Schmid is third in the AHL in GAA and fourth in save percentage.

For the Syracuse Crunch, Gabriel Dumont leads the team in points with nine. He is followed closely by Charles Hudon and Sean Day with eight points each, and Jimmy Huntington and Cole Koepke with seven. The Crunch recently received roster reinforcement in the form of Andrej Sustr, who was reassigned to the club by the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Hugo Alnefelt and Amir Miftakhov have handled the goaltending duties for the Crunch so far this season. Alnefelt has played six games, posting 2-3-1 record to go with a 3.56 GAA and a .864 save percentage. In five appearances this season, Miftakhov has a 3-1 record, with his lone loss coming Wednesday night versus the Bridgeport Islanders. His 1.73 GAA and .939 save percentage rank seventh and eighth in the AHL respectively.

Special teams play has been another hallmark of the Utica Comets undefeated start. They are number one in the AHL on the power play at 29.4% and the penalty kill at 89.3%. The Crunch are currently tied for thirteenth on the power play at 20%, while they trail only the Comets for the AHL lead on the penalty kill at 88.6%.

Television coverage for the game will be on WPNY and AHLTV, and the radio broadcast will be on WKLL 94.9 K-Rock. Utica Comets play by play announcer Jason Shaya will be on the call.

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