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Strong Third Period Leads to Grizzlies 5-3 Road Victory

Friday, March 22nd
Strong Third Period Leads to Grizzlies 5-3 Road Victory

Strong Third Period Leads to Grizzlies 5-3 Road Victory 

West Valley City, Utah – Brett Stapley had 2 goals and 1 assist and Mick Messner scored the game winner 10:54 into the third period to lead the Utah Grizzlies to a 5-3 win over the Rapid City Rush on a Friday night at The Monument. 

Utah goaltender Jarrett Fiske made his professional debut but left the game 2:13 in after suffering an apparent injury. He was replaced by Will Cranley, who saved 25 of 28. The Grizzlies got on the board first as Dylan Fitze connected from the slot for his 19th of the season 11:29 in. Fitze has 11 goals in his last 13 games. Utah is now 21-3-2 when scoring first this season. Rapid City answered back as Mark Duarte got his 10th of the year 14:38 in. The score was tied 1-1 after 20 minutes of play. 

Brett Stapley gave the Grizzlies a 2-1 lead on a pass from Brandon Cutler 4:55 into the second. Duarte scored his second of the night for the Rush to tie the contest 12:10 in. The score was deadlocked 2-2 after 2 frames. 

Stapley scored his second of the night and 22nd of the season 3:27 in as Utah retook the lead. Rapid City’s Alex Aleardi tied it up 8:55 in as he scored on a breakaway 8:55 in. Utah got a power play a few seconds later and Mick Messner scored the game winner 10:54 in. Brett Stapley got the main assist on the goal as he now has 21 points (6 goals, 15 assists) in his last 10 games. Stapley leads Utah with 17 multiple point games this season. Brandon Cutler added some insurance as he extended Utah’s lead 15:33 in. Cutler has 16 points (8 goals, 8 assists) in his last 10 games. The Grizzlies outscored the Rush 3 to 1 in the third period as they got the two-goal win. Utah is now outscoring opponents 42 to 25 in the third periods over their last 26 games. 

The Grizz are now 10-10-1 on the road since January 1st after beginning the season 0-11 away from Maverik Center. 

Utah Defenseman Liam Dennison made his professional debut and was a +1 in the win. The forward line of Adam Berg, Brandon Cutler and Brett Stapley were each a +3 for Utah in the win as their record goes to 29-30-3 on the season. Utah outshot Rapid City 42 to 28. 

The series continues at The Monument on Saturday night at 7:05 pm. Utah will be home for 6 of their final 10 games in the 2023-24 regular season. 

3 stars 

  1. Brett Stapley (Utah) – 2 goals, 1 assist, +3, 7 shots. 
  2. Mick Messner (Utah) – GWG 10:54 into the third period. 
  3. Will Cranley (Utah) – 25 of 28 saves. 

Honorable Mention goes to Brandon Cutler, who had 1 goal and 2 assists, +3 rating and 6 shots on goal. Cutler has 31 goals and 23 assists on the season. He is 2nd in the league with 235 shots on goal. 

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