West Valley City, UTAH – The Ontario Reign, proud affiliate of the NHL Los Angeles Kings, fell to the Utah Grizzlies, 5-2, on Friday evening before a crowd of 3,710 at the E-Center.
Utah scored the first goal of the game at 4:24 in the opening period. Left wing Ryan Kinasewich picked up the loose puck and snapped it past Ontario goaltender Curtis Darling on his stick side. Defenseman Matt Clarke and left wing AJ Perry claimed the assists on the opening goal.
With only two seconds remaining on a Utah power play, right wing Vlady Nikiforov beat Darling with assists from AJ Perry and forward James Sixsmith at 9:45. The Grizzlies took their 2-0 lead into the middle period with the Reign looking to get on the board.
Ontario’s first goal of the night crossed the red line on a power play at 13:36 in the second period. Defenseman David Walker fired of a shot on goal that was redirected past Grizzlies netminder Mitch O’Keefe off a Utah defenseman. Forward Greg Hogeboom and right wing Tony Voce recorded the assists on the play.
Only 22 seconds later, right wing Sean O’Connor launched the puck into the top shelf with assists from center Tim Kraus and defenseman Brian Kilburg, who recorded his first professional point on the play.
Utah scored three more goals before the clock hit zero. AJ Perry notched his third assist of the night on Jason Sixsmith’s second goal of the game at 17:04 in the middle frame. At 9:54 in the third, AJ Perry scored his first goal and fourth point when he tapped the puck past Darling on Utah’s third power play goal of the night with an assist from defenseman Peter Aston. A quick wrist shot from forward Tim Crowder marked the Grizzlies fourth power play goal and closed out scoring in the match. Utah took the win in the first of a three-game series against Ontario with a final score of Grizzlies 5, Reign 2. P> Three stars:
1. UTA – AJ Perry
2. UTA – Ryan Kinasewich
3. UTA – Jason Sixsmith