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EIGHTH TIME NOT THE CHARM FOR FLAMES IN 4-2 DEFEAT

Friday, February 6th
EIGHTH TIME NOT THE CHARM FOR FLAMES IN 4-2 DEFEAT

Glens Falls, NY – The Adirondack Flames fell to the Utica Comets for the eighth time in a row on Friday, as they dropped a 4-2 decision in front of 3,136 fans at the Glens Falls Civic Center.

Despite goals from Drew Shore and Markus Granlund and a 30 save effort from Joni Ortio in net, the Comets proved once again to be more than the Flames could handle. Brendan Gaunce, Nicklas Jensen, Dustin Jeffrey, and Alex Friesen were the goal scorers for Utica, while Jacob Markstrom backed it up with 31 saves between the pipes for the Comets.

It was a wild, back and forth, first period that all started with a Markus Granlund snipe just 70 seconds after the opening puck drop. In just the Flames’ second shift of the game, Granlund intercepted the puck in the Utica zone, moved in and wristed a shot past Jacob Markstrom to give the Flames the early 1-0 lead. The tally, which was the Finnish forwards’ fifth of the season, was unassisted.

Then it was Utica’s turn. With Partick Sieloff in the penalty box for Adirondack, the Comets found themselves skating with the man-advantage. The Comets cycled the puck around their offensive zone and when Bobby Sanguinetti sent the puck towards the net, Dustin Jeffrey was there to put home the rebound, as he lifted a floater over the head of Ortio. The goal for Jeffrey, which came at 9:35 of the period, was his 14th of the season and was assisted by both Sanguinetti and Cal O’Reilly.

It didn’t take long for the Flames to respond, however, as Drew Shore regained the lead for Adirondack just 23 seconds after Jeffery’s tying goal. Positioned in the slot in front of Markstrom, Shore redirected Sena Acolatse’s shot from the top of the right circle past the Utica netminder to put the Flames back in front 2-1. The goal for Shore, which was his 10th of the 2014-15 campaign, came at 9:58 of the opening frame and was assisted by Acolatse and Sven Baertschi.

The scoring for the first 20 minutes was not yet finished, however, as Brendan Gaunce netted his fifth goal of the season at 14:08 of the first. Again, Utica cycled the puck around the Flames’ defensive zone and when it reached Andrey Pedan, he threw the puck towards the net. The initial shot from Pedan was knocked down in front, but Mike Zalewski was there to find puck, and he fed a perfect cross-ice feed to Gaunce, who slid the puck past the left pad of a sprawling Ortio. Both Pedan and Zalewski earned the assists on Utica’s second tying marker of the evening.

The Comets picked up their first lead of the game at 15:17 of the middle stanza, when Nicklas Jensen deflected an Alex Biega point blast past Ortio to put Utica ahead 3-2. Jensen’s goal, which was his 10th of the season, came on the power play and was assisted by Biega, who took the initial shot, and Brandon DeFazio.

The score did not change until Alex Friesen iced the game with a shorthanded empty net goal with 1:27 remaining in regulation. With the power play, the Flames pulled Ortio for the extra attacker, but when Adirondack turned the puck over in Utica’s zone, Friesen gained control and sent the puck the length of the ice and into the empty net to put the Comets ahead 4-2. The goal for Friesen was his fifth of the season and was unassisted.

The Flames return to action on home ice tomorrow, as they will again look to finally crack the Comets. Tomorrow is Hockey Night in Glens Falls, presented by Bud Light. Pre-game specials will be available at JP Bruno's from 5-6 p.m. with puck drop scheduled for 7 p.m. Tickets are still available for that night, and all remaining Flames home games. Visit the Flames box office, call 518-480-3355, or order online at glensfallscc.com.

Adirondack Flames Hockey • Fired Up

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