Comets double up Amerks in Game 1

Photo; Jeff Pexton

Joe Gambardella scored the go-ahead goal with 10:31 left in regulation as Utica rallied from 2-0 and 3-2 deficits to defeat Rochester, 6-3, in Game 1 of their North Division semifinal series on Tuesday night.

Game 2 of the best-of-five series is set for Saturday night.

Tyce Thompson and Robbie Russo scored 59 seconds apart early in the second period to get the Comets even at 2-2, and Ryan Schmelzer‘s power-play goal late in the frame knotted it back up at 3-3.

A.J. Greer tacked on a pair of insurance goals to cap a three-point night and help Utica hand the Amerks their first loss of the postseason.

Reilly Walsh and Nolan Foote tallied two assists apiece for the Comets, and Nico Daws (1-0) stopped 19 shots.

Arttu Ruotsalainen scored his league-leading fourth and fifth goals of the playoffs for Rochester, and JJ Peterka netted his first career postseason goal.

Aaron Dell (2-1) finished with 34 saves as the Amerks were outshot 40-22 on the night, including 35-13 over the final two periods.

North Division Semifinals – Series “J” (best-of-5)
N1-Utica Comets vs. N5-Rochester Americans
Game 1 – Tue., May 10 – UTICA 6, Rochester 3
Game 2 – Sat., May 14 – Rochester at Utica, 7:00
Game 3 – Sun., May 15 – Utica at Rochester, 5:05
*Game 4 – Tue., May 17 – Utica at Rochester, 7:05
*Game 5 – Thu., May 19 – Rochester at Utica, 7:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern