West Valley City • On a day filled with charity hockey games and jersey auctions at the Maverik Center to benefit local police officers and firefighters, the Utah Grizzlies were in no giving mood.
In fact, the team was downright stingy when it came to allowing goals as Aaron Dell saved 30 of 31 shots in regulation and overtime, and all three Bakersfield attempts in the shootout to top the Condors, 2-1.
“He’s unreal,” coach Tim Branham of Dell. “Imagine if we had him all year. It [makes] a big difference when you have a goalie who can make saves, and he made a bunch of them.”
A night after scoring two goals in Utah’s 3-2 win over Bakersfield, Jamie MacQueen got things going again Saturday at the end of a fast-paced first period in which no penalties minutes were assessed and the Grizzlies managed 10 shots on goal.
Less than 30 seconds before the first intermission, MacQueen guided the puck, forehand to backhand through the crease, before finding teammate Kris Hogg for a one-timer that found the back of the net for the game’s first goal.
Playing only sporadically with Utah in between call-ups to the American Hockey League, MacQueen has now recorded 20 points (12 goals, eight assists) in 20 games, including four goals in four games against Bakersfield.
The Condors made it a game in the second and third periods, combining for 17 shots and drawing a key goaltender interference penalty that set up the team’s first and only goal moments after Utah returned to full strength.
But Utah was not to be denied. Mathieu Aubin, Jamie MacQueen and Vinny Scarsella scored for the Grizzlies in the shootout and Dell shutdown the Condors to extend the team’s home unbeaten streak to ten games.
“[Bakersfield] took it to us in that second period, they outplayed us for sure,” said Branham. “But in the end we found a way to get it done. … You’ve got to give the boys a lot of credit. They didn’t quit, they played together. … The goal for this month was to get back on track and we’ve done that.”
Grizzlies 2,Condors 1 (SO)
R Aaron Dell records his 12th win for the Grizzlies, saving 30 of 31 shots and all three Bakersfield attempts in the shootout.
• Utah improves its record to better than .500 for the first time since opening night.