Outlier goalie’s empty netter and shutout steals the show(case)

by Jon McBride

Utah Outliers goaltender Dawson Rodin came into the 2017 Western States Shootout as a definite player to watch, putting up some incredible numbers in the first half of the season.

While Rodin’s formidable puck-saving skills were to be expected, it was his puck-scoring skill that became the talk of the event on Wednesday and even made SportsCenter as the No. 2 play of the night.

With the Outliers leading the Long Beach Bombers 5-3 last Wednesday and 1:30 on the clock, the Bombers pulled their goalie, lifted the puck on goal from center, Rodin gloved the puck down immediately, shot the puck down the length of the ice and was just able to get it down and past the goal line in front of a speeding defender. After the goal the entire Outlier bench emptied to celebrate the rare occurrence with Rodin, and Rodin went through the goal celebration line in front of the bench.

The original video posted online by Black Dog Hockey now has 18,000 views on Facebook and 7,000 views on Twitter.

Looking for a way to best that goal-scoring performance, Rodin got the nod in Thursday’s showcase finale against the Oklahoma City Blazers, who were coming off two straight victories over the Ogden Mustangs and Idaho IceCats. Rodin stopped all 17 Blazer shots he faced, including a few point-blank, high-quality opportunities to pick up the shutout. It was the first time that potent OKC offense has been shut out since their inaugural 2014-15 season, three years ago.

Rodin now has a 1.65 goals against average and .943 save percentage this season. The 6-foot-5-inch, 230-pound Chilliwack, BC native has been among the top five WSHL goaltending statistical leaders all season long. He certainly leads the league goaltenders in goals scored now.

Rodin’s helped lead the Outliers to their best first half of a season in franchise history. They’re 22-6-0, just a single point behind the Ogden Mustangs for the division lead, with three games in hand.