UTICA — The Utica Comets scored two minutes into the game Wednesday at home against the Belleville Senators and goalie Akira Schmid backstopped the team to a 2-0 shutout win to maintain the best record in the AHL.
Reilly Walsh tallied his third goal of the season 1:55 into the game to give Utica a 1-0 lead. Earning assists on the goal were Jeremy Groleau and Graeme Clarke.
The Comets doubled the lead to 2-0 on a power play goal by Brian Flynn with 3:46 left in the first period. His fourth goal of the season came on assists from Robbie Russo and A.J. Greer.
Both power plays struggled in the game, with Utica converting one of its four chances and the Senators going scoreless in five attempts.
Schmid earned his second shutout of the season by stopping all 23 Belleville shots. That included a dozen in the third period. He is now 8-0 on the season with 10 goals allowed.
The Comets put 26 shots on Belleville goalie Mads Sogaard.
The Comets improved to 16-1 on the season. They sit atop the North Division standings and have the best winning percentage in the AHL. The team has allowed 30 goals in 17 games.
Utica's two weekend games were postponed by the league due to COVID-19 protocols for their opponents. Saturday's game at Hartford has been postponed with no new date announced yet. Sunday's game at Providence has been moved to Jan. 10.