Great Goaltending leads to Preseason Shootout Win
By: Tyson Whiting
The Utah Grizzlies win 2-1 in a shootout against the Idaho Steelheads in the preseason finale at CenturyLink Arena as Caleb Herbert put away the game winner in the 3rd round of the shootout.
Goaltending was the story for the Grizzlies. Christian Frey played the first half of the game and stopped all 16 shots against a high powered Steelheads offense.
Brandon Wildung replaced Frey midway through the 2nd period at the 9:57 mark. Wildung stopped 22 of 23 shots as well as 5 clutch saves in overtime to force a shootout with the game tied 1-1.
In the shootout, the Grizzlies shot 2nd. the first 2 rounds went without a goal as Cole Ully and Josh Winquist had shots stopped by Idaho goaltender Ryan Faragher. Wildung stopped 3 in a row in the shootout, including a huge save on a Justin Parezek shot to give the Grizzlies a chance to win with Caleb Herbert, who delivered the game winner on a low liner past Faragher.
The Grizzlies lone goal in regulation came as Cole Ully intercepted a Ryan Faragher shot on the win and scored an unassisted goal to give Utah a 1-0 lead. Ully is very familiar with playing in Idaho as he had 19 goals and 21 assists for the Steelheads in the 2017-18 season.
“To get a win here in the last game heading into the regular season is big for us, so we are going to go to next week and work on the little things to try to improve, but it was a good camp and a good preseason for us,” says Grizzlies forward Ryan Misiak, who played in all 72 games for Utah last season.
Idaho’s goal came in the 3rd period as Brad McClure scored 6:23 into the period to tie it up at 1-1.
The Grizzlies opening weekend is October 12th and 13th against the Rapid City Rush. Tickets are on sale now at utahgrizzlies.com or the Maverik Center box office. With the first win of the regular season head coach Tim Branham breaks the Utah Grizzlies record for wins by a head coach. He’s tied with Butch Goring at 178 wins a piece as a coach in Utah.
Grizz notes: Neither team scored on the power play. Utah was 0 for 4, Idaho was 0 for 3. The game featured 2 fighting majors as Teigan Zahn and Jack Nevins fought 40 seconds into the contest. Austin Carroll fought Idaho’s Clint Lewis with less than 4 minutes remaining in the 2nd period. Cole Ully and Caleb Herbert were tied for the Utah lead with 4 shots each. Utah ends the preseason with a 1-1 record. Idaho and Utah will meet 15 times during the regular season.