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PREVIEW: Game #28 – Steelheads vs. Grizzlies

Friday, December 21st
PREVIEW: Game #28 – Steelheads vs. Grizzlies

PREVIEW: IDAHO STEELHEADS (15-9-3) VS. UTAH GRIZZLIES (15-6-4)

FRIDAY, DEC. 21, 2018 | 7:10 PM | CENTURYLINK ARENA | BOISE, IDRADIO: 1350AM KTIK | TV: CABLEONE CH. 72 | STREAM: ECHL TV

Tonight’s Game: The Steelheads finish their nine-game home stand with a two-game weekend against the Utah Grizzlies starting tonight at CenturyLink Arena.

Head-To-Head: The Steelheads and Grizzlies have split their six previous meetings this season with two results going into overtime both favoring the Steelheads. This is the second of three weekends with a head-to-head meeting and the last meeting in the season series until February. The Steelheads own a 95-45-24 record against the Grizzlies in their ECHL series.

Last Night: The Steelheads edged out the Mavericks in a 3-2 win on Saturday night from CenturyLink Arena. Jeff King (2:26 1st) snuck in an early goal, and Mitch Moroz (11:44 1st) followed up with his own tally to take an early 2-0 lead. The Mavericks scored two goals to tie the game, 2-2, thanks to forwards Greg Betzold (14:24 1st) and Joey Sides (PP, 16:10 1st) before the end of the first period. Alex Dahl (5:08 2nd) scored the eventual game-winning goal to edge ahead at 3-2. Despite much time spent killing penalties in the second period, the Steelheads held on to take the win. Tomas Sholl (8-4-0) saved 30 of 32 shots in the win, while Ben Halford (4-4-0) stopped 21 of 24 shots in the loss.

Humming Along: The Steelheads head into the final weekend of their nine-game home stand on quite a roll following a three-win week. Thanks to Saturday’s win, the Steelheads are now 6-1-0-0 in the home stand with wins in 10 of their last 12 games and points in 13 of 16 contests, boasting a 11-3-1-1 record since November 7. Because of their fortunes, the Steelheads are in second place for the second time this season heading into a weekend with the potential to also vault them into first place for the second time this year.

Call The Fedz: Steelheads goaltender Ryan Faragher was named CCM/ECHL Goaltender of the Week following his two-game performance against the Kansas City Mavericks last week, posting a 2-0-0 record with a 0.50 goals-against average, a .981 save percentage, and one shutout. The Fort Frances, Ont., native saved all 21 shots in Friday’s 3-0 shutout win, marking his first shutout of the year and 10th of his professional career. The award is Faragher’s fourth and first for the Steelheads this season. Through seven games this year, Faragher owns a 3-2-1 record with a 2.66 goals-against average and a .909 save percentage.

Man On Fire: Steelheads forward Reid Petryk extended his hot run in points, extending his point streak to four games thanks to a pair of assists on Saturday night. The Edmonton native has seven points (5g, 2a) in that time while also earning a three-game multi-point streak, the longest of the season for any Steelheads player. Petryk has been the hottest player in the second quarter of the season, earning points in eight of his last nine games since November 23, boasting 12 points (8g, 4a) in that time while being the only Steelheads player to reach double-digit points in that time. With his production, he now sits fourth on the team in scoring and second in goals, totaling 14 points (9g, 5a) through 21 games.

Back And Forth: The Grizzlies enter their second meeting with the Steelheads in three weeks and end a pattern of meetings against the Steelheads and Rapid City Rush. Since the pattern began on November 28, the Grizzlies have dropped five of their last eight games including two of three games in two separate weekends against the Rush while splitting their previous two-game weekend with Idaho. The Grizzlies have been held to just 2.65 goals per game, falling well below their season average (3.48) while being held to two goals or less in three of five games. In that time, the Grizzlies’ lead over the Steelheads has slid from seven points to just one point.

Power Outage: The Grizzlies’ power play has been stifled heavily since their active 10-game stretch between Idaho and Rapid City began on November 28. They’ve converted just once in 37 attempts (2.7%) in that time while being held scoreless in six-straight games (28 attempts) since their last power play goal on November 30 (Cole Ully). That has cascaded their power play numbers from second in the ECHL down to ninth in total percentage and dropped them by nearly four percentage points.

MOUNTAIN DIVISION STANDINGS:

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS PCT
Utah Grizzlies 25 15 6 3 1 34 .680
Idaho Steelheads 27 15 9 1 2 33 .611
Tulsa Oilers 27 13 8 4 2 32 .593
Rapid City Rush 30 13 12 2 3 31 .517
Kansas City Mavericks 25 14 9 1 1 30 .600
Wichita Thunder 28 12 11 3 2 29 .518
Allen Americans 30 6 22 0 2 14 .233

Next Game: The Steelheads finish their nine-game home stand on Saturday, Dec. 22 at 7:10 p.m. from CenturyLink Arena. Tickets are available by calling 208-383-0080 or going to IdahoSteelheads.com. Coverage begins at 6:50 p.m. MT on 1350-AM KTIK and ECHL TV as well as at 7:00 p.m. on CableOne Channel 72.

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