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Utah Grizzlies open home stand with SO win

WEST VALLEY CITY — The Utah Grizzlies (23-20-2-5) defeated the Victoria Salmon Kings (29-18-4-2) 3-2 in a shootout Wednesday night at the E Center to open a five-game home stand.

The game was the fifth-straight shootout played by Utah and Victoria this season and marked the 11th time in 12 games dating back to Oct. 29, 2008, that the two teams have played a one-goal game.

Utah took a 1-0 lead just 1:59 into the contest as James Sixsmith dropped a pass to Vlady Nikiforov in the right wing circle. AJ Perry also picked up an assist to start his 18th multiple-point game of the year. However, the Salmon Kings answered just 32 seconds later to tie the contest at one.

Each team then added a power-play goal as the game ultimately went to a shootout. The Grizzlies took a 2-1 lead on Nikiforov's second goal of the night as he fired in a shot from the slot assisted by Perry and Tony Romano. Victoria tied the game just four seconds into a power-play and 2:30 into the third period.

Beau Erickson stopped 34 of 36 through overtime, including 13 of 14 shots in the first period to extend his home winning streak to three games.

In the shootout, each team scored in the first round with Sixsmith scoring his first shootout goal of the year for Utah. The shootout would stay deadlocked until Perry's fourth-round score; which would prove to be his second game-winning shootout goal in less than two weeks as Erickson stopped two-straight from Victoria to finish the game.

The Grizzlies and Salmon Kings return to the E Center Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m.