Manchester one win away from first Calder Cup after 6-3 win in Game 4

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Monarchs closing in on Calder Cup.
Monarchs closing in on Calder Cup.

UTICA, NY – The Monarchs scored four straight goals after a tied first period to earn a 6-3 win over the Comets in Game 4 of the Calder Cup Finals at the Utica Memorial Auditorium on Friday. The win gave Manchester a 3-1 advantage in the series, one win short of clinching the franchise’s first ever Calder Cup.

Nic Dowd scored two goals, the first multi-goal game of his pro career in the playoffs. Nick Shore tallied a team-high three points with a goal and two assists.

Two of the Monarchs’ six goals came on the power play (2-for-6).

Manchester scored the first two goals of the game just over 30 seconds apart. First, Sean Backman capitalized on a Comets turnover by beating Jacob Markstrom at 12:45 in the first. Then Dowd scored his sixth goal of the playoffs at 13:17 to make it 2-0.

Utica answered back at 14:09 in the first period when Frank Corrado scored the Comets’ first goal of the game.

Sven Baertschi tied the game at 2-2 when he beat Patrik Bartosak at 18:54 in the first period with a power-play goal. It was the Comets’ second power-play goal of this series.

Colin Miller broke the tie with a power-play goal at 3:08 in the second period. It was his second goal of the playoffs and first of the Calder Cup Finals.

Manchester regained its two-goal lead when Nick Shore scored another power-play goal on a wraparound shot at 7:51 in the second.

Dowd tallied his second goal of the game and seventh of the playoffs at 19:50 in the second period to give the Monarchs a 5-2 lead.

Adrian Kempe extended the lead with his third goal in his last two games at 6:27 in the third period, making it 6-2.

Will Acton scored the final goal of the game for Utica at 17:54 in the third period.

Manchester will have a chance to clinch the series tomorrow night in Game 5, which is set to begin in Utica at 7 p.m.

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Notes:

  • Tonight marked the first time Utica lost by more than one goal since a 4-2 loss to Grand Rapids in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals. The six goals marked the most they allowed in a game since Game 4 of the Conference Semifinals (7-4 loss at OKC).
  • Sean Backman (goal, assist) is now tied with Nick Shore (4 goals, 14 assists) for sixth place on the Monarchs’ all-time points list in the playoffs with 18 (6 goals, 12 assists).
  • Manchester improved to 14-0 when scoring first in the playoffs.
  • Shore (goal, 2 assists) recorded his second straight multi-point game. He now has four goals and 13 assists in the playoffs.
  • Utica removed JacobMarkstrom from the game in favor ofJoacim Eriksson after Adrian Kempe’s goal at 6:27 in the third.

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About Carol Robidoux 5449 Articles
Journalist and editor of ManchesterInkLink.com, a hyperlocal news and information site for Manchester, NH.