ECHL hockey: Grizzlies beat Eagles in overtime
Facing a 5-on-3 disadvantage to begin overtime, it didn't look good for the Grizzlies.
With the game tied 1-1, Colorado drew two penalties in the final 30 seconds of the third period, leaving the Grizzlies undermanned for the better part of the overtime period. But some stingy defense helped Utah outlast the Eagles' power plays and led some overtime heroics from Danick Paquette.
Paquette found the back of the net for his second goal of the year at 2:30 in overtime after spending two minutes in the penalty box for high-sticking to begin the period, giving the Grizzlies a 2-1 victory.
"Paquette really deserved that. He battled hard all game," said Coach Tim Branham. "I felt like he could have drawn a couple penalties because of his work ethic, but he stayed patient and he got rewarded for it in the end."
With the win, the Grizzlies take three of five games on the homestand and improve their record to 4-5-1-1 on the season.
Despite the win, the Grizzlies' offense started uncharacteristically slow. After outshooting their opponents by 40 shots through 10 combined first periods this season, the Grizz managed only seven shots through the first frame on Monday, compared with 13 shots for Colorado. Utah's first shot on goal didn't come until more than half way through the first period during its first power-play opportunity of the night.
But the slow start on offense came alongside an impressive defensive effort.
Ben Meisner filled in for usual starter, Igor Bobkov, and saved 29 of 30 shots, including several 3-on-2 and 2-on-1 opportunities for the Eagles late in the game.
For Meisner, his first win of the season was a night to remember, but he was careful to give credit to his team's defense.
"It was nice to get that win â¦ but I really thought the guys played well defensively in front of me," said Meisner. "They kept the shots to the outside. They kept them so I could see them and that's all you can ask as a goalie."
Utah will begin a stretch of three games in four nights in three cities starting Wednesday at division-rival Idaho.
Storylines Grizzlies 2, Eagles 1 (OT)
R Utah goalie Ben Meisner stops 29 of 30 shots to earn the victory.
• Utah's Rylan Galiardi scores his fourth goal in four games.