Utah Grizzlies @ Idaho Steelheads: Chaos is a Ladder

Coming out of a terrific first game of the playoffs, the Grizzlies look to hold off what is no doubt going to be a cranky and determined Idaho team. The roster remained the same, as did the starting lineup and the goaltender–after all, why mess with success?

First Period

  • Couple of quick saves for Kevin Carr in the first two minutes. And by a couple, we mean six.
  • Teigan Zahn looks to be playing forward so far, and there appears to be no Grayson Downing, though he’s listed in the lineup.
  • Grizzlies get their first shot short-handed. Because of course they do!
  • Idaho strikes first on the power play with just four seconds left.
  • Shots are 10-1 for Idaho, which isn’t ideal, but certainly has been something of a normal thing lately.
  • MICHAEL ECONOMOS TIES IT UP!
  • App says Josh Dickinson, but everyone is pretty sure it was Economos…
  • Herbert to the box.
  • Herbert’s penalty killed.
  • Oh lord, Austin Carroll is down, and really slow to get up. Think he’s fine though.
  • Travis Barron and Robbie Payne drop the gloves with five seconds to go.
  • After 20 we’re once again tied 1-1, shots 13-6 for Idaho.

Second Period

  • Ty Lewis draws a power play!
  • …Definitely not accustomed to seeing Jake Marchment absolutely dwarfed by an opponent…But that would be Keegan Kanzig for you!
  • Carr with a big save on a short-handed breakaway.
  • And that right there is why Caleb Herbert was on the All-ECHL First Team. 2-1 Utah on the power play!

  • Elgin Pearce gets another chance short-handed. That’s not at all concerning or anything.
  • There was SO much traffic, but somehow Carr saw the shot!
  • Pearce and Gage Ausmus to the box for unsportsmanlike conduct, even though the two of them were among the least involved of anyone in that crowd! 😂
  • Pearce AGAIN short-handed. But Carr’s been there to meet him every time.
  • Haha Henrik Samuelsson was looking at the play, and missed the door being open for a second or two there!
  • The best chance on the Utah power play went to Idaho, the best chance on the Idaho power play went to Utah.
  • OH MY STARS. kEVIN. What. A. Save.
  • Oh god, let Carr be ok let Carr be ok…
  • panic
  • Ok. He seems to be alright…We can stop freaking out now…
  • Pearce gets a five minute charging major, Ottenbreit and Kanzig get two minutes each for unsportsmanlike conduct.
  • 2-1 Utah after 40, shots 26-23 for Idaho.

Third Period

  • 3:31 of power play time to begin.
  • Nothing doing on the man-advantage. Carr made some good saves right off the face-off.
  • Oh great. Zahn is skating off holding his face. Not good.
  • That was a very pretty toe-drag from Carroll. Unfortunately, Brady Norrish got a piece of it.
  • Zahn’s back. Not sure if he even missed a shift!
  • Really physical game. Guys are taking a beating entirely separate from all the shots they’re diving in front of.
  • Carr with another BIG save.
  • This is definitely far more the kind of game expected from these two teams. Close, and ferocious.
  • Uhg. Samuelsson ties it up with 9:30 ish to go.
  • Tomas Sholl with a big save on Barron.
  • Josh Anderson and Carroll with a flurry of chances around the net.
  • Speaking of Anderson, he appears to be playing forward now while Zahn’s back on defense.
  • After a wild second period, the third was far quieter.
  • Wouldn’t be playoff hockey if there wasn’t OT, I guess!
  • Shots 40-34 for Idaho, tied 2-2.

OT

  • Nice takeaway from Anderson in the offensive zone there.
  • Good zone time in general in the first minute.
  • Make that the first three minutes. Which probably means that Idaho will win. Because the hockey gods are fickle.
  • Three minutes later and shots are now 3-3.
  • That was quite the wild bounce off the glass!
  • Kessy wins it 7:56 into OT. (Seriously, why is it always Kessy??)
  • The Grizz return home with the series tied 1-1.

Whether it was Dickinson or Economos who scored the first goal, both had strong games, Dickinson adding at yet more points to his collection as well as six shots. Lewis was also continually in the thick of things also putting up six shots. Carr also had a strong game, making 42/45 saves. As fun as the 7-1 thrashing was,  this is far more the kind of game this rivalry series promised, what with the tight score, the general dislike, and everything that comes with a meeting between these two bitter foes.

Game 3 takes place on Wednesday night when playoff hockey arrives at the Maverik Center.

 

Goals

  • First Period: Dickinson (Richart)
  • Second Period: Herbert (Davis, Dickinson)
  • Third Period: None

UTA: 1/6 (19 PIM)
IDH: 1/6 (24 PIM)

 

 

Photo courtesy of Rob Church.


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Utah Grizzlies @ Idaho Steelheads: Magnificent 7

The second season is here, the reset button has been hit, and the roster has seen some changes. Travis Barron returned from the AHL, Mitch Maxwell was placed on injured reserve, and Turner Ottenbreit and Grayson Downing are back in the lineup. The Grizzlies are electing to ice seven defensemen, and a truly lethal group of nine forwards. With Joe Cannata on the Avalanche roster, Alex Leclerc is backing up Kevin Carr for Game 1 of the 2019 Kelly Cup Playoffs.

The stage is set.

First Period

  • Travis Barron, Jake Marchment, and Austin Carroll on one line? Goodness. That is pretty ridiculous. It’s even more ridiculous when you consider that it’s followed up by Caleb Herbert, Grayson Downing, and Jack Walker, and completed with Josh Dickinson, Ty Lewis, and Mike Economos. And that’s while missing Cole Ully AND Joey Ratelle. The Grizzlies are STACKED up front!!
  • The amount of defensive zone time to open the period is definitely not good.
  • Idaho ices the puck twice, and momentum shifts a bit.
  • MARCHY OPENS THE SCORING. Jake’s goal came on a tip in of Kevin Davis’ shot, Carroll gets the other assist.
  • Ew. Idaho ties it up.
  • Steven McParland decides to sock Turner Ottenbreit for no reason after the whistle, and that leads to some rough stuff in front of the Utah net.
  • Ahh playoff hockey. Zero penalties called unless someone dies.
  • Things pretty even as the period passes the 15 minute mark.
  • Dickinson with a really nice move to cut to the slot and put the Grizzlies up 2-1 through traffic!
  • Downing and Herbert dig the puck out from the wall behind the Idaho net, and Walker buries the Grizzlies’ third goal of the period!
  • 11-11 are the shots after 20, but Utah leads 3-1!

Second Period

  • The 28s with a puck battle to start the period, because having Marchment and Will Merchant on the ice at the same time isn’t at all confusing.
  • Oooh Walker did not miss the net by much.
  • Downing gets taken down, and that’s the first power play of the game! Quite a crowd gathers on that play.
  • HERBERT SCORES ON THE POWER PLAY. Tomas Sholl wasn’t able to cover up the puck, and it bounced around the front of the net right to Herbert’s stick!
  • Multiple point nights for Lewis and Dickinson already.
  • Oof Idaho very nearly scored there! Really heads up play there from Downing and a save from Carr.
  • Power play Idaho…
  • …and killed with no problem.
  • Dickinson gets hit, and Josh Anderson and Nolan Gluchowski drop the gloves over it.
  • Oh wow, that was a nice one for Dickinson’s second of the game. He kind of just slung it past Sholl, who is having an uncharacteristically rough night.
  • Good defensive coverage there from the guys.
  • Haven’t really needed to mention him much, but Carr’s had a good night.
  • Lewis just needs a goal to go with the oodles of assists he’s got tonight!
  • Another scuffle at the end of the second!
  • Grizzlies lead 5-1 after 40, shots 23-20 for Idaho.

Third Period

  • Ok boys, get Josh Dickinson that hat trick.
  • Lewis trying to take the puck away from Keegan Kanzig was hilarious, as Kanzig is HUGE, and Lewis is, well, not.
  • Idaho with a fair bit of offensive zone time to start the third, but only one shot to show for it so far.
  • Merchant and Marchment continue to have shifts against each other.
  • Please go play in the offensive zone. You’re making me nervous.
  • Nice move from Carr there to make the save, then bat the puck away behind the net. He’s really good at that.
  • CARROLL GETS IN ON THE FUN!
  • AND BARRON FOLLOWS RIGHT AFTER!!

 

  • Some pushing and shoving after the net gets dislodged behind Carr, and while that’s going on, Ryan Faragher is in for Sholl on the other end.
  • Gabriel Verpaelst refuses to go, pulling the move that has been pulled on Utah a couple of times this season. It leads to a lengthy scrum though.
  • Anderson gets two for roughing, Barron gets two for roughing and a misconduct, Kanzig gets a double minor for roughing and a misconduct, Kale Kessy gets five for fighting and a game misconduct for being the aggressor, and Elgin Pearce gets two for roughing and a misconduct. The final result is that Utah gets a five-on-three for two minutes, and then three minutes of five-on-four!
  • Lewis with a nice chance to get his first, and then Downing.
  • Grizzlies win 7-1!!!!

Dickinson (2G, 1A including the GWG and the team leading five shots), Lewis (3 A, four shots), and Richart (2A) were named the three stars of the game, though Carroll (1G, 1A, four shots) and Herbert (1G, 1A) could also easily have been named stars. Every single forward picked up at least one point, and though he was a bit overshadowed by the offensive outpouring, Carr was a strong 35/36.

The Grizzlies will look to continue their strong start in Game 2, also in Idaho on Saturday.

Goals

  • First Period: Marchment (Davis, Carroll), Dickinson (Lewis, Richart), Walker (Herbert)
  • Second Period: Herbert (Dickinson, Lewis), Dickinson (Lewis, Economos)
  • Third Period: Carroll (Downing), Barron (Richart)

UTA: 1/3 (21 PIM)
IDH: 0/1 (48 PIM)

 

 

Photo courtesy of Rob Church.


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Utah Grizzlies vs Idaho Steelheads: Battling Back

In the second to last game of the regular season Josh Dickinson made his return to Utah, while Tanner Nagel drew back in, and Cole Ully and Turner Ottenbreit sat out. Kevin Carr got the start.

First Period

  • A lot of hustle here from two teams that got in during the wee hours of the morning!
  • Great kill from the boys and Economos draws a power play on the next shift!
  • Aw man, Caleb Herbert missed a wide open net on a fabulous cross-crease pass.
  • Yes it’s a power play, but the Grizzlies have had really good possession all game.
  • Great give-and-go from the Herbert line!
  • Jack Walker shows of his wheels, and presumably gets a speeding ticket, cause he’s headed to the box! (It was for tripping.)
  • Really nice shift from Michael Economos on that penalty kill. Forced the puck out of the zone twice!
  • Idaho with some good zone time (though not a lot of shots) since their power play.
  • Joey Ratelle throws a puck just wide…
  • Passes are slightly less crisp than they were at the start of the game.
  • Idaho’s had all the shots since that power play…
  • Really could do with some more possession in the offensive zone.
  • The last couple of minutes have been mostly Kevin Carr vs Idaho.
  • Idaho’s intercepting a lot of passes, which is definitely contributing to Utah’s possession struggles.
  • Ty Lewis gets roughed over and retaliates. Only he goes to the box.
  • However, the power play is quickly negated on a double minor for high-sticking.
  • Shots are 14-7 for Idaho after a scoreless 20.

Second Period

  • Four on four for 1:12, then a Utah power play.
  • Josh Dickinson’s back-hand squeaks just wide, and then Herbert bobbles a pass from Kevin Davis.
  • Uhg. Idaho strikes first on an absolute rocket from the point.
  • Who else but Taylor Richart with the big block before the puck is redirected wide.
  • Really alert move from Dickinson? I think? to keep the puck from slipping past Carr.
  • Teigan Zahn and Kale Kessy are the main culprits in a tussle that breaks out by the Utah bench. Kessy socks Zahn so he gets an extra two minutes of shame.
  • Shots are now 19-19.
  • OOOh. A very nice pair of saves from Carr there.
  • Carroll running the Steelheads around their own zone on this Herbert penalty. Looked like King was trying to goad Austin into taking a penalty on the way back to the bench. Didn’t work though.
  • 2-0 Idaho through traffic right as the power play was expiring.
  • 25-23 shots for Utah, 2-0 score for Idaho.

Third Period

  • Ok, need a big 20 minutes here.
  • Lewis bats in his third of the year from Zahn and Dickinson at 3:07!
  • Well, the 9,345 people in attendance are NOT happy about the non call on Economos. It happened so fast I’m not sure it even should have been a penalty.
  • Snazzy little glove save from Carr there.
  • OOooh that was a quiiiiiick whistle as the puck bounced away from Tomas Scholl.
  • Just need one more…
  • Idaho is starting to look tired. They’ve iced the puck a couple of times, and now they’ve flipped the puck out of play.
  • Davis with a couple of ROCKETS.
  • Pretty sure the Grizzlies should have gotten credited for a few shots on goal during that power play…
  • OH WE NEEDED BOUNCE LIKE THAT. The puck JUUUUUST squeaks past Scholl and over the line!!!
  • To OT we go!

OT

  • HERBERT WINS IT IN OT.

 

Caleb Herbert was named the first star of the game with the game winning goal–his 32nd of the year. Ty Lewis got second star for his assist and two goals, and Josh Dickinson’s two assists earned him third.

“He plays a lot like Ully.” Tim Branham said of the second star. “Those guys are fast, skilled, they can really get around the ice. He’s been good for us. He’s been really good for us, he’s had five points his first two games, we kind of struggled offensively as a team there, and then tonight, right, getting us on the scoreboard, getting us going, and good for him, he’s a good player, he’ll have a real long career, and not at this level.”

“I thought [Dickinson] played really well tonight,” he continued. “We’re just trying to rest Cole there, just save him for playoffs. I thought Josh came in and played an excellent game. He hasn’t been on the ice for a long time, he’s been injured up there in Colorado, hasn’t played, and I thought he was really good. Really good tonight.”

After Friday’s game misconduct, Carr was back in command of his net, and Branham had praise for both his goaltenders. “Kevin was great yesterday, and he was great today. I thought Alex Leclerc came in and played a really good game yesterday. It was a tough situation he got put in. Questionable call, I think at the end of the day I think it might have been the right call by the referees, but very questionable, but it was a tough situation for Alex to come in and play. I thought he did a great job, he’s a good goaltender. He moves really well laterally, and he’s a great kid. Carrsy, Carrsy’s…” he paused, before adding “Great game, great both games, today and yesterday, passionate guy, did a great job for us today.”

The team has had a bit of a rough go of it lately, and that was painfully obvious on the most recent seven game road trip, but the problems began well before that, as Branham noted.

“Rough road trip! We’ve had a rough since February 16th! You know what, our roster has changed so much this year, we’ve played real short handed many times, and then when you have an influx of players sometimes it takes a little bit to gel, and we’ve had a lot of that, a lot of change in and out. Battling to find our consistency, there have been games where we played well, just couldn’t find ways to score, we haven’t scored a lot of five-on-five goals lately, our power play has been carrying us. This was a character win tonight. Obviously that’s a good team, probably who we’re gonna face in playoffs. We definitely needed that one, cause they were getting some bounces, then we finally got some bounces there at the end. Really proud of the way the boys played that third period, though we played a really good first period to be honest as well. It was good to get the win.”

The game was Lewis’ first home game with Utah, and he enjoyed it. “It was a pretty cool experience,” he said. “The fans here are fantastic, it’s a great atmosphere, and I really like the group of guys here, so it was fun playing here tonight.”

As much as he enjoyed the moment, it was clear that he’s focused on the future. “It’s huge,” he said of the win, “Going into playoffs this is a potential playoff match-up and to battle back like that in the third is big for our group. I thought the crowd was fantastic, lots of energy–especially in the third– and I thought we fed off that really well. It’s a good win, and just looking forward to tomorrow!”

“I thought we were pretty good defensively for the most part, there were a few breakdowns here and there but we have a really diverse group in there. After the second period we knew we had to find a way to win, and every single guy in there stepped up their game and brought their effort. It’s a huge play by Herbs there in overtime to put that in, so its good on him and good for our group, and hopefully keep it going for playoffs.”

With Utah’s win and Kansas City’s loss, it is now official that Idaho will in fact be the Grizzlies’ first round opponent, as well as their opponent in the final game of the regular season.

 

Goals

  • First Period: None
  • Second Period: Lewis (Zahn, Dickinson), Lewis (Dickinson, Marchment)
  • Third Period: Herbert (Davis, Lewis)

UTA: 0/6 (10 PIM)
IDH: 1/4 (14 PIM)

 

Photo courtesy of Action Sports Photography.


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Utah Grizzlies @ Allen Americans: Weekend Split

With their playoff spot assured, the Grizzlies looked to keep the wins coming against the Americans. The roster remained the same, though some of the wingers switched spots, and Kevin Carr once again got the start.

First Period

  • Good pace from the Grizzlies to start the game.
  • So of course Allen strikes first through a heavily screened Carr.
  • Ryan Walters with a point blank shot on C.J. Motte, rather like the play Jack Walker made to Michael Economos last game. No dice though.
  • Great pace from both teams throughout the first so far.
  • They’ve picked up right where they left off last night, two crowds by the time the game has hit the eight minute mark.
  • Turner Ottenbreit draws the first power play of the night.
  • Aaaaaand it’s negated.
  • Uhg. Breakaway goal for Braylon Shmyr four-on-four.
  • Carroll rings iron.
  • Jacob Doty and Teigan Zahn drop the gloves!
  • Walters has had a couple of really good looks, but Motte appears to have his number at the moment.
  • Utah coughs up the puck in their own zone, and Shmyr scores again.
  • Carroll causes chaos!
  • Ully gets shoved into the goalie, and yet gets a penalty for it. Go figure.
  • ….And Ausmus gets a ten minute misconduct.
  • That was not the first period anyone wanted…At least, not goal wise.

Second Period

  • Ok. Put that period behind us, there’s plenty of time…right???
  • Herbert gets a look in alone, but is stopped by Motte. Ully gets a good one as well.
  • Oooh Carr was NOT happy after that. Took a whack at Miller, and then that drew a crowd. Carr and Miller both get penalties.
  • Walters has had some really good games lately, and he’s already up to four shots.
  • HE SCORES.
  • Aaaaaaaand Allen comes right back with a goal.
  • And Carr takes a whack at Miller. Both get penalties.
  • Dalton Thrower to the box.
  • Another scrum breaks out after a whistle at Allen’s net. Austin Carroll and Gary Steffes head to the box for roughing. Moose is loose.
  • Zahn had a couple of strong moves there. And then he takes a penalty.
  • Allen cuts away from the game at the worst possible moments.
  • Anyone else think those horns in Allen’s noise-o-meter piece look like Solo cups??
  • Walker always making things interesting with his speed.
  • Verpaelst takes a penalty with 40 seconds left, and Allen scores.
  • Ew.

Third Period

  • Nagel to the box, not how we wanted this period to start…
  • Lots of penalties…
  • All of the penalties…
  • Come on…anyone in white…just get a goal…
  • This power play would be a great time to get a goal with ten to go…
  • Well, they certainly made an effort there!
  • Ully gets hit and that draws a crowd and a power play. Five-on-three here, and this is BIG.
  • HERBERT!!!! Caleb gets his 31st following some sweet, sweet passing from Ully and Walker.
  • CARROLL ON THE SECOND HALF OF THE POWER PLAY!!
  • Way to deliver on that five-on-three, then five-on-four!!
  • Empty net for Utah.
  • Empty net goal for Salituro.
  • Ew.
  • Well, the good news is the power play was quite effective, and the goals came from Walters, Carroll, and Herbert.
  • The bad news is…well, points to the score.
  • Grizzlies fall 6-3.

Herbert became the first Utah player since Ryan Kinasewich to surpass 30 goals (he’s got a long way to go to catch him though), while the Utah power play remained hot.

The road trip continues in Wichita on on Wednesday.

Goals

  • First Period: None
  • Second Period: Walters (Ottenbreit, Richart) (PP)
  • Third Period: Herbert (Walker, Ully) (PP), Carroll (Herbert, Walker) (PP)

UTA: 3/7 (35 PIM)
ALN: 1/7 (25 PIM)

 

Photo courtesy of Action Sports Photography.


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Utah Grizzlies vs Rapid City Rush: Constructive Chaos

In the very last meeting between Rapid City and Utah in 2018-19, Joe Cannata once again got the start, Eric Freschi and Will Smith and Joey Raats sat out for new ATO signing Tanner Nagel, and Austin Carroll made his long awaited return to the lineup. Jake Marchment remained sidelined with an injury, as did Grayson Downing as Utah looked to clinch their playoff spot.

First Period

  • Carroll gets the second shot of the period on his first shift back!
  • Cole Ully gets a two-on-one-ish, but RC breaks it up before it hits the net. Shots are 4-2 for RC about five into the first.
  • Considering how grumpy the first period was on Saturday, it’s been surprisingly quiet in the early going.
  • A couple of really nice saves from Cannata there on the PK.
  • Carroll doing what he does best, creating mayhem and drawing power plays.
  • Taylor Richart with a great play to keep the puck in the zone on the PP.
  • It hasn’t led to anything yet, but the passing on the power play is looking really good.
  • Jack Walker flies in on the back-check to break up a developing one-on-none short-handed. Pretty sure he should be Jack Runner, or Jack Sprinter, or maybe Jack Roadrunner.
  • Sooo players collide, and go figure, it’s Carroll causing chaos again. And drawing penalties again.
  • There’s a reason I call him Chaos on Skates.
  • ULLY SCORES. JK. Ully does not score. Goalie interference called, apparently. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • …And to add insult to injury, RC makes it 1-0 short handed.
  • Jack Riley picks up his second hooking call of the period mere moments after the Rush returned to full strength.
  • THAT ONE COUNTS.
  • Richart was ROBBED.
  • 1-1 after 20, shots 14-13 for Utah.

Second Period

  • Really strong offensive zone shift from Carroll and crew about three minutes in.
  • Mitch Maxwell with a pair of strong defensive plays there.
  • Utah has a nice shift in the offensive zone, so of course, RC scores on the counterattack.
  • Good response from Utah though. Unfortunately, Carlson. (Where have we heard THAT one before. 🙄)
  • Oh geez. The puck went through Cannata at a really weird angle, hit the post, and then was snagged by a Utah player. Everyone breathe a sigh of relief!
  • Please go play in the offensive zone.
  • Richart has come really close on several occasions tonight
  • OTTER ON THE POWER PLAY. Tie game!

  • Carlson loses his mask twice in the span of two shifts!! O.O
  • Richart currently leads the team with seven shots.
  • Oh, there’s the cantankerousness that was missing from this game.
  • We give you one guess to pick who was in the middle of all the mayhem around Carlson.
  • If you guessed Carroll, you were right.
  • Oh, that was an unfortunately good goal. Cannata had the whole side sealed up, EXCEPT the one spot that Poulsen found.
  • 3-2 RC after 40.

Third Period

  • Grizz start the third on the power play.
  • Ully almost had an absolute beauty, but rang iron.
  • THAT EARLY POWER PLAY DID NOT GO THE WAY OF MOST. WALKER TIES THE GAME.

  • When Carroll isn’t creating chaos, he’s creating really nice takeaways/scoring chances like that one.
  • Oh wow. That was a great shift from Herbert, Gage Ausmus, Michael Economos, Joey Ratelle and Gabriel Verpaelst.
  • Utah is piling on the good shifts.
  • Well, that’s a new one, the Grizzlies’ net was just taken off and replaced!
  • Ratelle with a nifty dipsy-doodle to elude the Rush defensemen.
  • Watching defenders converge on Carroll is like watching a very strong magnet move through metal objects. He just draws defenders to him, which leads to the aforementioned chaos.
  • Uhhhhg power play goal Rush.
  • Carlson was WAY out of position, and STILL robbed Ryan Walters.
  • That definitely should have been tripping drawn by Walker.
  • In order to tie the game up, you’re definitely gonna have to go play on the other end of the ice…
  • 1:42 and Utah’s net is empty.
  • Herbert rings iron, and Utah draws a power play!!
  • Well, it went RIGHT down to the wire, and there was some INCREDIBLE plays from Verpaelst among others, to keep the puck away from the empty net.
  • If nothing else, that was a highly entertaining game, and thank goodness, that’s the end of the Rush for this season.
  • Rush win 4-3, shots 39-31 for Utah.

 

Caleb Herbert scored his thirtieth goal of the season, and is in the top five goal scorers, despite having played anywhere between five and ten games less than the players in front of him. His opening power play goal, and the assist on Walker’s tally earned him second star honors, while Turner Ottenbreit was named third star. Richart put up nine shots, and Carroll’s return seemed to bring a jolt of electricity through the entire lineup.

It was definitely an exciting game from start to finish, but the loss was made frustrating by the Ully goal that was waved off for supposed goalie interference in the first period.

“He even admitted he made a mistake on our goal that he waived off, should have had four power play goals. If he counts that goal, they don’t get their short handed goal” Tim Branham said. “Every time we have this guy it’s like that. It is what it is. You gotta battle through it and come out. But when you’re playing against a team that works hard and you have an extremely good goaltender that you’re playing against, this stuff gets magnified, and when the referee is dictating the outcome of the game, it makes it tough.”

After some struggles on the man advantage the Grizzlies scored four power play goals, even if only three of them counted.

“We had a little dry spell there,” Caleb Herbert said, when asked about the improvement. “So we switched a few things around, kind of simplified our end zone set up, got back to the basics like shooting pucks, puck retrievals, things like that. Tonight, pucks started going in. I think earlier in the series we were doing ok, but pucks weren’t going in, Carlson was making some big saves, so we got a couple good bounces tonight, and that obviously helps too.”

“He’s a talented hockey player, that’s for sure.”Branham said when asked about his 30 goal scorer. “He’s got a lot of talent, he does some fun stuff out there. He can shoot the puck, he’s got a great release, he’s really fast when he wants to skate, he’s had a good season.”

He had praise for Carroll’s performance as well. “I thought he had an amazing game, I thought played really well, he controlled the play, cycling in the offensive zone, made some good puck decisions, I thought he was really good tonight.”

While Coach Branham spoke about Carroll’s individual play, Herbert elaborated more on Carroll’s impact on the team as a whole in addition to his play on its own.

“Austin’s a really good player, he brings it every night. You know what you’re gonna get out of him–100% effort. Obviously you saw him in front of the net tonight, stirring things up and being a real physical presence out there. I think we’ve been missing a bit of that with him being out, so it’s obviously great to get him back, and he’s a big piece of the puzzle moving forward, so it’s gonna be good.”

“We’re getting some guys back here from injury, kind of fills out our lineup a little more, we’re a little more solid, we play with a little more grit, we have a little more depth.” Herbert added, “I think heading down the stretch that’s gonna be important for us, having those guys back, and I think we’re gonna turn the corner here heading into playoffs and have some momentum on our end.”

The momentum will have to be built on the road, however, as the Grizzlies head out for the final road trip of the year which will see them hit Allen, Wichita, Allen again, then Tulsa before they return home to close out the season against Idaho.

 

Goals

  • First Period: Herbert (Economos, Walker) (PP)
  • Second Period: Ottenbreit (Carroll, Walters) (PP)
  • Third Period: Walker (Herbert, Economos) (PP)

UTA: 3/7 (10 PIM)
RC: 1/4 (16 PIM)

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Action Sports Photography.


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