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ECHL hockey: Alaska Aces rally to beat Utah Grizzlies 3-2 in overtime

First Published      Last Updated Mar 03 2017 10:57 pm

ECHL » Alaska rallies to defeat host Utah 3-2 in overtime.

West Valley City • The goal for the Utah Grizzlies this weekend was simply this: sweep the Alaska Aces and in so doing, tie their division foes for the fourth and final playoff spot in the Mountain D0ivision.

The Aces, however, had different plans. Alaska defeated the Grizzlies in overtime, 3-2, after rebounding from a 2-1 deficit behind the strength of goalie Kevin Carr's 29 saves.

"In the third period we didn't play with enough hunger to keep the puck out of the back of our net, and same in overtime," Utah coach Tim Branham said. "Kevin Carr made some great saves and that's what goalies are supposed to do. We need to come back Saturday with the same effort we demonstrated in the first period and carry it for 60 minutes."




With the Aces trailing by a goal, they began to apply offensive pessure on the Grizzlies and were rewarded for their efforts when Tim Coffman tied the contest. With overtime looming, Aces forward Ryan Trenz sealed Utah's fate, claiming the two points on the table and relegating Utah to one.

Although Alaska's Tim Wallace broke a scoreless tie, the Grizzlies recovered with a pair of goals to claim a 2-1 lead. With nothing separating Jon Puskar from a goal except Aces goalie Kevin Carr, Alaska defenseman Nolan Descoteaux pulled Puskar to the ice.

That's when the fans in attendance were treated to hockey's most exciting play: the penalty shot. And Puskar didn't disappoint, beating Carr high glove-side. Minutes later, Austen Brassard blazed up the ice and fired a successful shot past Carr to give Utah its first lead of the night.

Despite neither team registering a goal in the first period, it was the Grizzlies, with crisp and efficient passing, who controlled the first frame. Utah stifled Alaska's offense, holding the Aces to a meager six shots on goal, and didn't allow a shot for the first nine minutes of play. Utah had two stellar chances to get on the board but Alaska goalie Kevin Carr made a pair of mesmerizing saves, denying Zac Larraza and Brassard.

 

AT A GLANCE

ECHL standings

EASTERN CONFERENCE

North GP W L OL SL Pts GF GA

Manchester 57 31 16 6 4 72 216 198

Brampton 56 32 17 3 4 71 204 194

Adirondack 55 29 16 6 4 68 195 172

Reading 56 32 21 1 2 67 204 166

Wheeling 55 28 21 6 0 62 187 175

Elmira 57 11 38 7 1 30 124 217

South GP W L OL SL Pts GF GA

Florida 54 37 12 2 3 79 200 155

Greenville 57 32 20 4 1 69 198 193

Orlando 57 28 20 6 3 65 212 207

Cincinnati 59 30 25 4 0 64 164 172

South Carolina 58 30 25 2 1 63 177 173

Atlanta 55 21 26 6 2 50 181 215

Norfolk 55 21 30 4 0 46 158 203

Western Conference

Central GP W L OL SL Pts GF GA

Toledo 55 39 13 2 1 81 231 153

Fort Wayne 55 33 15 5 2 73 205 165

Quad City 56 31 22 1 2 65 173 169

Kalamazoo 57 29 24 1 3 62 166 181

Tulsa 59 26 28 5 0 57 166 189

Wichita 54 16 34 3 1 36 147 212

Indy 56 15 36 3 2 35 138 223

Mountain GP W L OL SL Pts GF GA

Colorado 58 40 14 1 3 84 228 166

Allen 58 36 17 3 2 77 231 168

Idaho 57 32 18 5 2 71 191 175

Alaska 55 28 19 2 6 64 179 178

Missouri 55 26 22 2 5 59 179 184

Utah 57 26 24 5 2 59 177 199

Rapid City 57 21 28 8 0 50 178 207

Friday’s games

Kalamazoo 5, Brampton 4

Manchester 3, Reading 2

Norfolk 5, Elmira 2

Florida 7, Atlanta 2

Wheeling 3, Indy 2, OT

Tulsa 3, Wichita 2

Allen 3, Missouri 1

Alaska 3, Utah 2, OT

Colorado 5, South Carolina 4

Idaho 3, Rapid City 1

Saturday’s games Manchester at Reading, 5 p.m.

Atlanta at Florida, 5 p.m.

Greenville at Orlando, 5 p.m.

Kalamazoo at Toledo, 5:15 p.m.

Elmira at Norfolk, 5:15 p.m.

Wheeling at Fort Wayne, 5:30 p.m.

Adirondack at Cincinnati, 5:35 p.m.

Tulsa at Wichita, 6:05 p.m.

Allen at Missouri, 6:05 p.m.

Indy at Quad City, 6:05 p.m.

Alaska at Utah, 7 p.m.

South Carolina at Colorado, 7:05 p.m.

Idaho at Rapid City, 7:05 p.m.


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