Alexandre Grenier tipped a shot past Richard Bachman at 3:32 of overtime to give Utica a 2-1 victory over Oklahoma City on Friday and even their best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal series at a game apiece.
The series heads to Oklahoma City for the next three games, beginning Monday night.
Grenier’s goal, his first of the playoffs, came on a deflection of an Adam Clendening shot from the point and ended the second overtime game in as many nights for the teams. Less than 24 hours earlier, the Barons won Game 1 on a goal 16 seconds into the fourth OT period.
Clendening and Grenier each finished the night with a goal and an assist, with Clendening scoring the tying goal 1:31 into the third period to end Bachman’s shutout streak at 144:37. Bachman (3-1) finished the night with 36 saves and has now allowed four goals on 147 shots this postseason (0.84, .973).
Cal O’Reilly had two helpers in the game, and Jacob Markstrom (4-3) finished with 22 saves in his 10th overtime game out of 15 all-time Calder Cup Playoff starts.
Connor Jones netted the only goal for the Barons 8:50 into the contest, his third of the playoffs.
Western Conference Semifinals – Series “K” (best-of-7)
1-Utica Comets vs. 6-Oklahoma City Barons
Game 1 – Thu., May 7 – Oklahoma City 2, UTICA 1 (4OT)
Game 2 – Fri., May 8 – UTICA 2, Oklahoma City 1 (OT)
Game 3 – Mon., May 11 – Utica at Oklahoma City, 8:00
Game 4 – Wed., May 13 – Utica at Oklahoma City, 8:00
Game 5 – Thu., May 14 – Utica at Oklahoma City, 8:00
*Game 6 – Mon., May 18 – Oklahoma City at Utica, 7:00
*Game 7 – Wed., May 20 – Oklahoma City at Utica, 7:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern