In a game that was a tale of two halves, the Comets fell short at home, losing to the Baltimore Blast 15-13 Saturday night at the Independence Events Center. Things looked pretty bleak for the Comets after falling behind 9-0, but the team fought back valiantly with a flurry of goals in the 4th period in one of the team’s most intense and exciting games of the year.
The Blast’s goalkeeper, Sagu, proved why he’s perhaps the best goalie in the MISL, saving 25 shots in the game. For the better part of three periods, shot after Comets shot was blocked, swatted away or kicked away by the veteran keeper as the Blast kept the Comets at arm’s distance all evening.
The Blast jumped out to a 3-0 lead after an unassisted three point goal by Max Ferdinand went past Leo Gibson and through goalkeeper, Danny Waltman. Pat Healey followed Ferdinand’s goal with a score at the 9:03 mark. The Blast led at the end of the first quarter by a score of 5-0.
The Blast went up 9-0 in the 2nd period after consecutive goals by Morris and Gonzaga. The Comets finally got on the board at the 11:48 mark of the period on an unassisted goal by Lucas Rodriguez, his first score of the season. The Comets got caught celebrating their first goal of the game and let the Blast’s Carlos Garcia sneak a goal past Waltman just nine seconds later. The Comets would close out the half with a rocket three point shot by Leo Gibson, his 4th 3-pointer of the year and 11th goal on the season. Halftime score: Blast 11, Comets 5.
The second half began with a Blast goal off an out of bounds re-start by Giuliano Celenza. The 3rd period would end fairly quietly with the Blast leading 13-5.
The Comets rallied in the 4th quarter beginning with a nice header goal from Bryan Perez, his first goal of the season on an assist by Stefan Stokic. The Blast answered once again with a goal by Warren Ukah at the 5:41 mark. After a tripping foul in the box by the Blast’s Mike Lookingland, Byron Alvarez of the Comets was awarded a penalty kick that was blocked by Sagu, but Alvarez followed the shot and put the deflected ball into the back of the net. The Comets finally capitalized on a power play after the Blast was penalized for having too many men on the field. Jamar Beasley scored from the right side after on assist by Lucas Rodriguez, pulling the Comets to within 15-11. With 3 ½ minutes to play, the Comets pulled Waltman for a 6th attacker and quickly converted on Byron Alvarez’s second goal of the game, bringing the Comets within a goal of tying things up. The Comets couldn’t muster another score, but the four goals in the period were the most by the team this season. The loss drops the Comets’ record to 3-8.
The Comets next game is tomorrow, (Sunday), January 23rd at 3:05p in Omaha against the 3rd place Vipers. The Comets will then return home to take on the Milwaukee Wave for Retro Night on Friday, January 28th at 7:35p. Many former Comets greats will be playing a fun game at halftime of the match, including Alan Mayer, Gino Schiraldi, Doug Neely, Ted, Eck, Gordon Hill and many other former Comets players. The current Comets team will be playing in replica jerseys of the iconic rainbow-striped uniforms worn during the team’s inaugural 1981-1982 season. The Comets are encouraging all long-time Comets fans to break out their old Comets gear and wear it to the game