The Comets go for three straight home wins for the first time this season Friday when they play their first home game in two weeks.
What: Springfield Thunderbirds at Utica Comets.
When: 7 p.m. Friday.
Where: Adirondack Bank Center at Utica Memorial Auditorium.
Broadcast: KROCK 94.9 FM; watchtheahl.com; free on Facebook Watch.
Records: Comets (10-13-1-1; 22 points, tied for 5th in the North); Thunderbirds (12-6-1-2; 27 points, 4th in the Alantic).
Season series: It is the first of four meetings between the Eastern Conference teams.
Last meeting: Utica won 6-5 last season on March 31 in Springfield.
Game updates: @OD_Comets on Twitter.
About the Comets: Utica has lost three of its last four games and is 4-5-0-1 in the last 10 games following a 5-2 loss to Rochester on Wednesday. … The Comets have won three of their last four home games and are 4-7-0-0 at home this season. Their eight points at home are the second-fewest in the AHL. They've been outscored 40-28 at home. ... Utica has killed off 19 of their last 21 penalties over the last six games, including a 4-4 performance last Friday at Binghamton. The Comets' penalty kill is 12th at home this season. ... Evan McEneny has nine points (2-7-9) in the last 10 games. The defenseman, who missed much of last season with a knee injury, has 10 points this season. His two goals are most among Comets defensemen. ... Reid Boucher (11 goals) and Zach MacEwen (10 goals, career-best six-game point game point streak) are the lone players with double-digit goals. Tanner Kero has eight while three others have five.
About the Thunderbirds: Springfield has earned at least a point in three straight games (2-0-1-0) following a 5-4 overtime loss to Bridgeport on Sunday. … Springfield has lost four of its last five games on the road this season. They are 4-4-0-1 on the road this season. … Jayce Hawryluk’s 22 points (5-17-22) are tied for 14th in the AHL. He has 3 goals and four assists during a three-game point streak. He had a goal and two assists last season against Utica.
Transactions: On Monday, The Vancouver Canucks traded Michael Carcone to Toronto for Josh Leivo, who is with the NHL club. … The Comets reassigned defenseman Brandon Anselmini to Kalamazoo on Saturday after being recalled a few days earlier. He didn't play in any games.
Injuries: Olli Juolevi hasn’t played since Nov. 17 due to reported knee injury and is out 2 to 3 weeks, according to Vancouver GM Jim Benning. ... Jalen Chatfield (lower-body) is out until at least Christmas. He is on crutches and in a cast on his left foot/leg after Wednesday’s game. ... Vincent Arseneau (hand) left Nov. 9′s game with a hand injury following a fight. He has not played since. He’s expected to see a specialist this week, Cull said. ... Wacey Hamilton (concussion) had a setback after practicing in early November. He has not played this season. He participated Thursday in a red no-contact jersey during an optional practice.
Comets active leaders: Tanner Kero 8-11-19
Reid Boucher 11-8-19
Zack MacEwen 10-9-19
Jonathan Dahlen 4-10-14
Olli Juolevi 1-12-13
Comets goaltenders: Thatcher Demko 2.65/.902/2-3-0
Richard Bachman 4.17/.877/3-4-0
UTI - 27/113 – 23.9%, 4th
SPR - 26/108- 24.1%, 3rd
UTI - 17/99 – 82.8%, 12th
SPR - 23/101- 77.2%, 26th