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Game Day Blog

Game Day Blog Entry: January 15, 2018

01/15/2018 9:49 AM - Adrian Denny

This Situation
-The Grizzlies open four games in seven nights with Rapid City today, before heading to South Dakota for games Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
-Utah outscored Wichita 8-3 over the weekend with a 4-2 win Friday and a 4-1 win Saturday.
-Utah returns home January 24, 26 ad 27 to host Tulsa.

At All-Star Game
-Rookie defensemen Cliff Watson, who tallied three assists in two games in Wichita, is not with the team today as he participated earlier today in the ECHL All-Star Classic in Indianapolis.
-Watson will rejoin the Grizzlies for Friday’s game in Rapid City after spending December 4-January 8 with the Vancouver Canucks organization.

Holiday Matinees
-Utah is 4-2-1-1 over holiday matinees and 2-0-1-1 on Martin Luther King Day the last four seasons under Tim Branham.
-Utah beat Rapid City 5-1 on President’s Day 2016 as current Grizzlies captain Ryan Walters had two goals in that game.
-Utah has killed five-straight penalties after a stretch that saw the opposition scored on seven of the last eleven power-plays over a four-game stretch.
Other Notes
-Brendan Harms is an even or better in eleven-straight games played.
-Sam Windle is an even or better in 12 of his last 13 games played.
-Zach Saar is an even or better in ten of his last eleven games played.
-Jon Puskar has scored in four-straight games which ties his longest with Utah. He’s had a four-game scoring streak each of the last two seasons.
-Erik Higby has scored in three of the last four games for the second time in the last 12 games.

Injuries All of A Sudden
-In the last week, Charley Graaskamp (January 7), James Melindy (January 10) and Michael Pelech (January 13) have all sustained injuries.
-Before that, Utah had no players unable to participate due to injuries. 

Game Day Blog Entry: January 13, 2018

01/13/2018 10:46 AM - Adrian Denny

Utah has 44 goals in their last 11 games for an average of four goals per-game during that stretch, which would lead the ECHL if it was done over the course of 72 games. Colorado and Fort Wayne lead the ECHL for the season with an average of 3.86 goals-per-game. The Grizzlies are also averaging 34.36 shots during that stretch.

Utah is eighth in the 27-team ECHL with a plus-70 shot differential entering tonight which starts the 37th game of the season.

Utah has 42 or more shots in two of the last three games and 38 shots through two periods last night was the most that they have recorded through 40 minutes this year.
The Grizzlies have outshot the opposition now in a season-high four-straight games.

The Grizzlies are 5-13 (30.7-percent) on the power-play over the last three games and scored their first five-on-three power-play goal last night. Austin Ortega has factored in on four-if the last five Utah power-play goals with two goals and two assists.

Ryan Misiak and Taylor Richart were the only two Grizzlies to play in all 36 games during the first half. 

Four-straight games in Wichita have been tied at one with Wichita scoring the first goal in three of the first four games before Utah has then tied the contest up.

Game Day Blog Entry: January 12, 2018

01/12/2018 10:09 AM - Adrian Denny

Utah’s 3 for 8 on the power-play is the best two-game stretch of the year. The penalty-kill has only gone five-for-nine however the last two games.

Utah is looking to get things back and going in January where they are 34-14-4-3 the last four seasons in January under Tim Branham. 

The Grizzlies have ten or more shots in 13-straight periods. The previous season-high was seven-straight periods with ten or more shots on goal.
Utah is 4-1 this year on the road on one day’s rest.

Jon Puskar has six goals and one assist for seven points in the last seven games. Six goals in seven games is his second best stretch of goal scoring with Utah.  He had six goals in five games January 14-25 last year, including a hat trick against Wichita. He’s been injured over Utah’s last two trips to Wichita so a hat trick January 25, 2017 was the only game he’s played against the Thunder.

Mitch Jones will be back in the lineup tonight after having one goal, one assist and tallying a plus-three in the Grizzlies game here on November 6, his first career game against Wichita. Zach Saar also had one goal and one assist in that game.

Game Day Blog Entry: January 10, 2018

01/10/2018 10:17 AM - Adrian Denny

The Grizzlies are tied for the most home games in the league at 21 as they begin a stretch of 13 of their next 18 and 17 of their next 25 games on the road through March 4.

Don't figure to have two happy teams tonight. While Utah was losing two at home to Rapid City, Allen lost their third and fourth-straight games at 6-3 and 5-0 in Boise over the weekend.

ECHL All-Star Cliff Watson has rejoined the Grizzlies and will be in the lineup tonight at Allen. He was tied for second on the team with six goals and had 14 points in 21 games at the time of his promotion.

In the last five days, the Grizzlies have added Cliff Watson and James Melindy along with Austin Ortega from the AHL. Watson and Melindy will be back on the same defensive pairing, which was pretty good when they were together earlier this year. After getting settled with the Grizzlies the last few days, you can probably expect Ortega to really start putting the puck in the net.

Michael Pelech will play in his 200th career regular season game with Utah tonight. Current Allen American Mathieu Aubin played in 201 career regular season games with Utah. Current Visiting Assistant Coach Ryan Kinasewich leads Utah players in the ECHL with 238 games played. Gord Dineen is the all-time team Grizzlies leader with 440 games played. 

The Grizzlies have to be thinking last weekend was just a bizarre anomaly. It was just the third and fourth times this year that they have led and lost in regulation. Sunday was the first time this year that they have scored four goals and lost. It was the first time this year that they have led after one period and two periods and lost as they look to forget those two games and build on the 5-1-0-1 stretch they were on beforehand. 

Game Day Blog Entry: January 7, 2018

01/07/2018 7:06 AM - Adrian Denny

-Utah picks up a game they lead 3-1 at the first intermission.

-The are back in action Wednesday in Dallas against Allen before moving on to Wichita Friday and Saturday.
-Utah and Rapid City will begin four-straight games against each other in Utah’s next home game Monday, January 15.
-Utah is playing at home on a Sunday for the first time since March 10, 2013 as they beat Colorado 3-2 in overtime.

The First Period
-Utah outshot Rapid City 13-8 and killed the only penalty to build a 3-1 lead.
-Jon Puskar scored two goals and Charley Graaskamp had two assists.
-Jon Puskar, Ryan Misiak and Mitch Jones were plus twos in the first period.

More On Puskar’s Two Goals
-Jon Puskar became the fifth player to score two goals in a game this year, Ryan Walters has done it twice, but no one has gotten a hat trick.
-Utah had three hat tricks last year, with Jon Puskar getting one on January 25. Utah’s last hat trick was scored by Colin Martin on March 4. 
Last Night’s Game
-Utah outshot Rapid City 33-26.
-Utah went 0-6 on the power-play and 5-6 on the penalty-kill.
-Kevin Carr went the first 47:42 without allowing a goal and has stopped 31 of 34 shots this weekend.
-Utah’s seven game home winning streak and six-game home winning streak against Rapid City were both snapped.
-The lead Rapid City took with 2:15 left in regulation was their first lead in 197:45 of hockey this year.
-Utah had scored 16 goals in seven periods against Rapid City before getting just one goal last night.
Special Teams Vs Five-On Five In Season Series
-Rapid City has outscored Utah 4-2 on the power-play this year.
-Utah has outscored Rapid City 15-6 five-on-five this year
The Weekend
-Aggregate scoring on the weekend is 4-3 Utah this weekend.
-Utah scored four of the first five goals, before Rapid City scored two-straight to win Saturday.

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