The Grizzlies lost despite the return of 6-foot-6 Igor Bobkov, the ECHL Goaltender of the Month in February and March. On Wednesday, the Grizzlies announced Bobkov was reassigned by the parent club Anaheim Ducks from the AHL's Norfolk Admirals. Bobkov made 29 saves Thursday night, but it wasn't enough.
Bakersfield's Greg Miller scored eight minutes into the game, and the Grizzlies tied it up early in the second period on a goal by Charles Sarault, assisted by Jamie MacQueen and David Vallorani.
Utah then took the lead on a late-second-period goal by Phil Mangan, with assists from Danick Paquette and Brent Gwidt.
All four games in the series have been decided by one goal.
The Grizzlies face a do-or-die game Friday at 8 p.m. MDT in Bakersfield. The game will be broadcast on 1320 AM.
Game 1 • Bakersfield 1, Utah 0
Game 2 • Utah 2, Bakersfield 1
Game 3 • Bakersfield 4, Utah 3 (OT)
Game 4 • Bakersfield 3, Utah 2 (OT)
Game 5 • at Bakersfield, Friday, 8 p.m. MDT
x-Game 6 • at Utah, Sunday, 7 p.m.
x-Game 7 • at Utah, April 30, 7 p.m.
x if necessary