RECAP | IceCaps – Comets: Heading Home With a Win

(Photo by Utica Comets)
Saturday January 2, 2016 
Utica Memorial Auditorium, Utica, NY

St. John’s




(Photo by Utica Comets)


Forward lines and defense pairings: 

[one_half]Lessio – Hudon – Holloway
Bournival – De la Rose – Dumont
MacMillan – Eisenschmid – Fournier
McNally – Gregoire [/one_half]

[one_half_last]Ellis – Dietz
Hanley – Lernout
Bennett – Didier



Scratches: Eric Neilson, Michael McCarron (throat), Tim Bozon (undisclosed), Connor Crisp (undisclosed), Nikita Scherbak (undisclosed)
Injured reserve:  Ryan Johnston (back surgery)

Game Report

It was a must-win night for Sylvain Lefebvre’s IceCaps. After dropping the last two games to teams near the bottom of the standings, St. John’s needed to get back to winning ways before heading home – and they did it with style.

Lucas Lessio opened the scoring just 1:32 into the game with an unassisted goal.  Just about three minutes later, Jeremy Gregoire received a perfectly placed pass from Markus Eisenschmid to out the IceCaps up 2-0.  The Comets thought they had gotten one of those goals ba k, but the officials ruled it a no-goal due to being hit with a high stick. They did, however, finally get on the board halfway through the first period.

(Photo by Tina Russell / Observer-Dispatch)
(Photo by Tina Russell / Observer-Dispatch)

Josiah Didier took quite a beating in this game, seemingly skating with a target on his back. He was the recipient of quite a few hard hits, with two of them nasty enough to warrant Stefan Fournier and Mac Bennett dropping their gloves in Didier’s defense.

Dustin Tokarski looked sharp in net, allowing only one goal on 27 shots.  The second period was relatively evenly played, but Brandon McNally added to the IceCaps tally early in the third with his first goal of the season.  It was a decisive win for a team looking to continue the momentum on their next home stand.

The IceCaps return to St. John’s and will prepare to host the Portland Pirates on Friday.

▲     Josiah Didier, Markus Eisenschmid, Dustin Tokarski, Morgan Ellis

▼     Lucas Lessio, Charles Hudon

 15 Shots 27
0 for 2 Power Play 0 for 3
18 Penalty Minutes 16
 FINAL 1 2 3 OT SO T
 IceCaps (16-9-5-3) 2 0 1 3
 Comets (16-12-3-2) 1 0 0 1
Scorers Goalies
  • STJ:  Lessio (9), Gregoire (3), McNally (1)
  • UTI:  LaBate (2)
  • STJ: Tokarski (W) 3-3-4
  • UTI: Bachman (L) 6-6-2
 AHL Three Stars
  1. Dustin Tokarski   STJ
  2. Jeremy Gregoire   STJ
  3. Joseph LaBate  UTI

 Video highlights
 Post-game interview
Coach Sylvain Lefebvre

  • “We stayed poised, we stayed in control and we kept playing.”
  • “We had better sticks on the forecheck, we spent less time in our D-zone because we had better positioning and better sticks.”
  • “When you have good games like that from the support cast, it shows that it’s a team effort.”

Comets coach Travis Green (speaking to the Utica Observer-Dispatch)

  • “It was a tough loss. I thought we played a pretty good hockey game. (St. John’s is) a good team. They’re really fast. They’re in the top part of the standings for a reason.”

Post-game interview with Sylvain Lefebvre

Post-game interview with Morgan Ellis

Audio from interviews conducted by Amy Johnson for IceCaps Hockey Report | Rocket Sports Media.

Quotes and audio courtesy of Rocket Sports Media

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