The mood was jovial in the Idaho Falls Spud Kings’ locker room Thursday night after they beat the Rock Springs Grizzlies 3-1 at home.

“Say ‘pucks in deep!’” one player shouted as Easton Edwards was summoned for a media interview. “See how many times you can say ‘pucks in deep!’”

“Pucks in deep” is, of course, the stereotypical thing for hockey players to say in interviews — it’s the key to winning when you have nothing better to say. But on Thursday night, Edwards had plenty of better things to say.

“It was a good team battle,” Edwards said. “We struggled in the first a little bit, but we kind of just came together as a team and figured it out in the second and third.”

Easton Edwards scored a goal and an assist in the Idaho Falls Spud Kings’ 3-1 win over the Rock Springs Grizzlies.

Easton Edwards scored a goal and an assist in the Idaho Falls Spud Kings’ 3-1 win over the Rock Springs Grizzlies. Photo credit: Brogan Houston

Edwards contributed a goal and an assist in the game, as did his linemate, Ty Walker. At the end of the period, Tiziano Pauchard dropped the gloves with Owen Meyer for the first fight in several month at Mountain America Center — with the exception of the Fierce Fighting Championship, of course.

Head coach John Becanic, on the other hand, wasn’t quite as happy as his team after the game.

“We tried to beat them too much one-on-one,” Becanic said in reference to the first period. “Doesn’t matter if you’re playing the sixth-place team or Ogden, that’s a recipe for disaster.”

John Kremer scored the Rock Springs Grizzlies’ lone goal in their 3-1 loss to the Idaho Falls Spud Kings on Thursday night.

John Kremer scored the Rock Springs Grizzlies’ lone goal in their 3-1 loss to the Idaho Falls Spud Kings on Thursday night. Photo credit: Brogan Houston

The second period, in the opinion of the coach, was much better. Likewise, the score sheet deemed the second period as a dominant one for the Spud Kings, who scored two goals and out-shot their opponents 20-2. Additionally, they hit the crossbar once and they had two shots go through the goaltender and miss the net.

“The score could’ve been seven, eight (to) one,” Becanic said, referring to the second period.

Becanic was pleased with his team’s effort in the third period, although he was disappointed that they had to burn so much energy to make up for some mistakes. This was the first of three games in three consecutive days for the Spud Kings, so energy conservation will be critical.

What’s next?

Rolling into town on Friday are the Provo Predators, who are three points ahead of the Spud Kings in the NCDC Mountain Division standings. The two teams tee off on back-to-back nights this weekend and again at the end of the season, with all four games being played in Idaho Falls.

According to Becanic, Tucker Inabinet will start in net for the Spud Kings on Friday and possibly Saturday. Becanic mentioned that Inabinet’s lack of action in the second period should help him to preserve energy.

Additionally, Spud Kings captain Sacha Trudel might return Friday from the upper-body injury he suffered last week.

The puck drops at 7:05 p.m. Saturday night at Mountain America Center in Idaho Falls.