Outliers defeat Bulls
On Friday, January 28, the Outliers were back in action against the Pueblo Bulls. The Outliers had just come off three big wins against a handful of Pacific Division teams last weekend and were looking to add to their four-game winning streak.
Garrett Alderman got the start in net for the Outliers as he was coming off a winning performance against the Ontario Reign. Alderman has played solid in net for Utah this season and once again was on this night against Pueblo
In the first period Friday, the Outliers came out ready to battle, pressing hard against the Bulls and pushing them deep in their zone. Utah strung together a series of shots at the net early in the game looking to grab the first goal of the contest.
Unfortunately for the Outliers, it was Pueblo who got on the board first when they converted a goal on the powerplay at the 14:01 mark. The Bulls entered the Outliers' zone off the rush and set up a passing play that deflected off a Bulls player skating towards the front of the net. The puck redirected off of Utah goaltender Garrett Alderman and slipped through his legs.
The Outliers answered back with a power-play goal of their own at the 8:36 mark when Will Cohen slipped a pass down low to Leyton Pettypiece who rolled to the net and buried his shot to tie the game 1-1. The first period ended with the score tied up at one apiece and the Outliers' outshooting the Bulls 17-7.
The Outliers struck again for their second goal of the game at the 15:24 mark of the second period off a face-off in the Bulls' zone. Miles McCue won the draw to teammate Nicklaus Obourn who passed the puck to Kai Stothers at the point. Stothers released a quick shot to the net and McCue got a stick on it for the deflection past the Pueblo netminder.
With just over three minutes left in the second period, Nicklaus Obourn found the back of the net when Matthew Kreczman fired a shot from high in the Pueblo zone that deflected off a Bulls player and right to Obourn's stick. Obourn collected the puck and quickly sniped his shot top corner to give Utah a 3-1 lead heading into the third period.
The third period started in similar fashion to the second with the Outliers striking early at 16:18 into the frame. A hard forecheck was applied by Noah Bourassa and Trent Gephart that created a turnover in the Pueblo zone. Bourassa then got control of the puck and fired a shot at the net. With the puck sitting loose in the crease, Trent Gephart followed up at the net to poke it loose. The puck would eventually find its way to the side of the net in the scramble and Matthew Kreczman was quick to pounce on it and tap it into the back of the net for a 4-1 Utah lead.
Pueblo would not go away quietly as they answered back quickly with a goal of their own just over a minute later at 14:58. During an attack in the Outliers' zone, Utah had a mix-up in defensive zone coverage that left a Bulls player all alone in front of the net for a pass that he quickly shot past a surprised Alderman. Pueblo's goal narrowed the Utah lead to 4-2.
After the Bulls scored to close the Utah lead, it would be the Outliers storming back with a quick goal of their own to make it 5-2. While on the power play, Matthew Koepke received a pass from Donovan Burdette high in the offensive zone. Upon receiving the pass, Koepke walked down an open lane on the defenders and blasted his shot past the Pueblo goalie for a 5-2 score.
The power play would once again convert for the Outliers at the 10:34 mark with a beautiful display of passing between Miles Mccue, Magnus Einarson, Will Cohen, and Leyton Pettypiece. Cohen would eventually end up with the puck on his stick and release a perfect shot to give the Outliers a commanding 6-2 lead.
Utah was not finished with their offensive display on this night as some hard work by Sean Morris on the forecheck led to a turnover which he quickly passed to the front of the net to Noah Bourassa. With the puck sliding into the slot, Bourassa skated into it with all his might and blasted a hammer of a slap shot into the top corner of the net to extend Utah's lead to 7-2.
The Bulls got one more goal with under a minute to play in the game to make it a 7-3 victory for Utah. The win puts Utah on a five-game winning streak. Garrett Alderman finished the night with 22 saves and he was solid in net picking up another victory for his club.
The Outliers will be back in action again next weekend as they host the Northern Colorado Eagles and the Pueblo Bulls. Friday night will be against the Eagles at 7 pm, Saturday against the Bulls at 6:30 pm, and 12 pm on Sunday against the Eagles. All three games will be played at the Acord Ice Center and can be watched live online at HockeyTV.com.