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Clark Cup Final Preview: Sioux City Musketeers vs. Chicago Steel

05/10/2017, 1:30pm CDT
By USHL

Preview of the 2017 Clark Cup Final between the Sioux City Musketeers and Chicago Steel.

 

Schedule

Game 1: Friday, 5/12/17 at 7:05 pm at Tyson Events Center

Game 2: Saturday, 5/13/17 at 7:05 pm at Tyson Events Center

Game 3: Friday, 5/19/17 at 7:05 pm at Fox Valley Ice Arena (HD)

Game 4 (if necessary): Saturday, 5/20/17 at 7:05 pm at Fox Valley Ice Arena (HD)

Game 5 (if necessary): Tuesday, 5/23/17 at 7:05 pm at Tyson Events Center

 

Overall Playoff Record

Sioux City: 6-2

Chicago: 6-3

 

Home Playoff Record

Sioux City: 4-1

Chicago: 4-1

 

Road Playoff Record

Sioux City: 2-1

Chicago: 2-2

 

Head-to-Head (Regular Season)

Chicago won regular season series 2-0

  • January 15, 2017: Chicago 2, Sioux City 1
  • February 10, 2017: Chicago 2, Sioux City 1

 

Leading Playoff Scorer

Sioux City: Kristian Pospisil, 10 points (4G, 6A)

Chicago: Jack Badini, 13 points (5G, 8A) - leading USHL playoff scorer

 

Leading Playoff Rookie

Sioux City: Micah Miller, 2 points (1G, 1A)

Chicago: Ben Mirageas, 4 points (0G, 4A)

 

Leading Playoff Defenseman

Sioux City: Jacob Wilson, 4 points (2G, 2A)

Chicago: Graham Lillibridge, 6 points (0G, 6A)

 

Leading Playoff Goaltender

Sioux City: Matiss Kivlenieks, 6-2, 1.45 GAA, .950 SV%, 2 shutouts

Chicago: Ales Stezka, 6-3, 2.24 GAA, .929 SV%, 2 shutouts

 

Power Play (Playoffs)

Sioux City: 30.0% (1st in USHL)

Chicago: 8.3% (4th in USHL)

 

Penalty Kill (Playoffs)

Sioux City: 87.5% (1st in USHL)

Chicago: 80.0% (4th in USHL)

 

NHL Draft Picks

Sioux City: Aapeli Rasanen (Edmonton Oilers)

Chicago: Ales Stezka (Minnesota Wild)

 

NHL Central Scouting Ranked Players

Sioux City: Eeli Tolvanen (8), Micah Miller (161)

Chicago: Dayton Rasmussen (6), Ben Miraegeas (63), Brannon McManus (191)

 

Storylines

  • This matchup features the top seed in the Western Conference and the top seed in the Eastern Conference. The last time the top team in the Western Conference and the top team in the Eastern Conference faced off in the Clark Cup Final was 2014, when the Indiana Ice defeated the Waterloo Black Hawks in five games. 
  • Both teams finished atop their conference in the regular season and broke their respective team record for most points in a season. The Musketeers won the Anderson Cup and led the Western Conference with 87 points, while the Steel finished first in the Eastern Conference with 81 points.
  • Sioux City swept Des Moines in their Western Conference Semifinal series before knocking off Waterloo 8-3 in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final on Tuesday night to reach the Clark Cup Final for the first time since 2005.
  • Chicago defeated Youngstown in five games to advance to the Eastern Conference Final, where they took down the defending Eastern Conference champion Dubuque Fighting Saints in four games to advance to the first Clark Cup Final in team history. 
  • The Musketeers are looking to capture their first Clark Cup since 2002, while the Steel are trying to win their first title in team history.
  • Sioux City is also looking to become the first team to win both the Anderson Cup and Clark Cup since the Dubuque Fighting Saints accomplished the feat in 2013.
  • Both teams have been dominant at home in the postseason, as Sioux City and Chicago sport identical 4-1 home records in the Clark Cup Playoffs.
  • Special teams might be a key advantage for the Musketeers in the series, as they boast the top power play and penalty killing units in the Clark Cup Playoffs.
  • Both teams' goaltenders have been outstanding so far in the postseason, as both Matiss Kivlenieks and Ales Stezka have six wins, a pair of shutouts and plus-.925 save percentages.

 

2017 CLARK CUP HUB

 

 

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 15th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2016-17. 30 or more players from the USHL have been selected in four consecutive NHL Drafts, and more than 400 players on team rosters last season committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.

USHL.com

Tag(s): Recaps