Utica Comets lose lead in loss at rival Rochester
For the second time in as many games, the Utica Comets gave up another multi-goal lead.
The rival Rochester Americans scored four consecutive goals —including three in the third period — to hand the Comets a 5-3 setback in the first game of a home-and-home series at Blue Cross Arena.
It was the first regular-season meeting between the North Division rivals since Rochester topped Utica in five games in a playoff series last spring.
The Comets and Americans are set to meet at 7 p.m. Saturday in Utica.
Friday's result marked a three-game (0-2-0-1) stretch for the Comets, who surrendered a three-goal lead Wednesday in a shootout loss to the Providence Bruins. The Comets, who had 40 shots on goal Friday, are trying to find some consistency on offense after losing the top-four scorers from last season.
Utica is 2-4-0-1 overall and the team's five points are tied with Syracuse for sixth place in the seven-team North Division. However, Utica has played seven games while Syracuse has played nine.
Utica led 2-0 in the first period Friday with goals from Brian Halonen and Brian Pinho (shorthanded). After Rochester scored late in the period, Utica made it 3-1 on the power play on Nolan Foote's third goal of the season.
Rochester tied in the third before Utica appeared to take the lead before it was reviewed and called off.
The Amerks scored less than 30 seconds apart later in the period to hand Utica the loss.
Goaltender Nico Daws finished with 15 saves and is 0-3-0 this season.
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