West Valley City • In need of a lift, the Utah Grizzlies got much more for newly arrived goaltender Adam Morrison on Friday night at the Maverik Center.
Playing with only 13 skaters because of injuries and call-ups and facing the best team in the ECHL Morrison put the Grizzlies on his back and carried them to a 3-2 shootout victory over Alaska.
Morrison stopped 33 of 35 shots in regulation and overtime before going 4 for 4 in the shootout as Utah snapped a two-game losing streak. In those losses, the Grizzlies had been outscored 11-2.
"He was very calm in the crease, made the saves that he should make and gave us a chance," said coach Kevin Colley. "Then, in the shootout, he was obviously perfect."
As upset as Colley was with his team after lopsided back-to-back losses to Idaho and Las Vegas, he was thrilled by its effort against Alaska.
"We're ecstatic with the result we got," Colley said. "But even if we had run out of gas as long as we leave everything on the ice I have no issues."
Morrison arrived in Utah on Wednesday and went through what Colley called "a half a practice" before making his debut with the Grizzlies.
"It was a full team effort," said Morrison, who was toiling as a backup goalie in Charleston, S.C., before coming to Utah.
"The guys in front of me were blocking shots and taking care of rebounds all night. It's nice to get in and win one a good way to start a relationship."
Morrison knew the Grizzlies, only 1-4 in their last five games, have been struggling.
"Nobody likes to lose in professional hockey because jobs are on the line," he said. "But these guys showed a lot of character. â¦
"We could have folded up after 40 minutes and said, 'It was a good effort. We're tried.' But the guys stuck to it and we ended up getting the win."
O Bryan Cameron and Mitch Wahl convert in the shootout and Utah scores a 3-2 ECHL win over Alaska.
• Newly arrived goaltender Adam Morrison stops 33 of 35 shots in regulation and overtime.