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PREVIEW: Game #29 – Steelheads vs. Grizzlies

Saturday, December 22nd
PREVIEW: Game #29 – Steelheads vs. Grizzlies

PREVIEW: IDAHO STEELHEADS (15-10-3) VS. UTAH GRIZZLIES (16-6-4)

SATURDAY, DEC. 22, 2018 | 7:10 PM | CENTURYLINK ARENA | BOISE, IDRADIO: 1350AM KTIK | TV: CABLEONE CH. 72 | STREAM: ECHL TV

Tonight’s Game: The Steelheads close their nine-game home stand in the final game before the holidays against the Utah Grizzlies from CenturyLink Arena.

Head-To-Head: Through seven games in the series, the Grizzlies have taken four of seven in a peculiar pattern, seeing one Steelheads win, followed by two Grizzlies wins, then two Idaho wins and again two more Utah victories. This is the final meeting until February and breaches the midway mark of their 15-game season series. The Steelheads now stand at 95-46-24 against the Grizzlies in the ECHL series.

Last Night: The Steelheads were taken down 5-1 by the Grizzlies from CenturyLink Arena. Steelheads forward Tony Calderone (2:59 1st) deflected a shot to open the scoring with a swift 1-0 lead before Grizzlies forward J.T. Henke (8:57 1st; 15:10 1st) scored twice to single-handedly take a 2-1 lead. The Grizzlies scored three more goals before the end of the game from defenseman Taylor Richart (18:19 2nd), defenseman Teigan Zahn (2:26 3rd) and forward Julien Nantel (5:21 3rd), solidifying the 5-1 win. Kevin Carr (8-1-1) halted 20 of 21 shots in the win, while Ryan Faragher (3-3-1) stopped 24 of 29 shots in the loss.

Final Countdown: The Steelheads saw their three-game win streak come to an end heading into their final game of the month-long home stand. The Steelheads hold a 6-2-0-0 record in their last eight games at home with their sole losses coming against Utah in identical results (5-1 L). Despite the setback, the Steelheads have yet to lose a series at home during the run, winning two with sweeps and helping their cause in the Mountain Division. The Steelheads still hold a share of second place heading into tonight and remain three points away from first place.

Low Economy: The Steelheads had trouble getting shots off against the Grizzlies last night, being held to just 21 shots through the contest. It’s the team’s lowest single-game shot total, overtaking their 24-shot efforts on October 26 in Utah (3-2 L) and last Saturday against Kansas City (3-2 W). The Steelheads have been held to under 30 shots for three-straight games following a five-game stretch with over that same total, averaging just 24.67 shots per game. The Steelheads still rank in the top-10 in shots this season with 32.79 shots per game (8th).

Yes-lan: Steelheads defenseman Nolan Gluchowski added another assist in last night’s game, continuing a consistent point run heading toward the holidays from the blue line. The assist was his fourth over his last three games, marking his first three-game point streak of the season and the lone active streak on the roster and now only trails Kale Kessy’s four-game assist streak by one game as the longest of the season. Gluchowski has been quietly adding points, now holding points in six of his last nine games (2g, 5a). On the season, he owns three goals and six assists for nine points through 18 games.

Getting The Cald: After starting his tenure in Idaho with one point through his first eight games, Steelheads forward Tony Calderone has found a spark of production extended with his second goal of the season last night on a deflection. Since November 24, the Trenton, Mich., native has been posting points consistently, adding points in four of his last six games, earning five points (2g, 3a) in that time despite missing three games last week. The continual bolster of production from depth players continue, including Reid Petryk (7g, 4a in last 10 games), Kale Kessy (2g, 8a since November 24) and now Calderone.

The Real J.T.: Grizzlies forward J.T. Henke continued an impressive scoring run with a pair of goals to lead Utah to victory. It’s his second-straight multi-goal game and extends his goal streak to three games, boasting five goals in that time along with one assist. Henke has been the spark the Grizzlies have needed recently, now with goals in three of his last four games and all nine points coming in his last seven games. With six goals this season, he already sits tied for fourth on the active roster in goals and tied for fifth for the season’s roster.

MOUNTAIN DIVISION STANDINGS:

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS PCT
Utah Grizzlies 26 15 6 3 1 36 .692
Idaho Steelheads 28 15 10 1 2 33 .589
Rapid City Rush 31 14 12 2 3 33 .532
Kansas City Mavericks 26 15 9 1 1 32 .615
Tulsa Oilers 28 13 9 4 2 32 .571
Wichita Thunder 29 12 11 3 3 30 .517
Allen Americans 31 7 23 0 2 16 .250

Next Game: The Steelheads head to South Dakota following the holiday on Friday, Dec. 28 at 7:05 p.m. against the Rapid City Rush. 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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