A recap of Friday night action in the USHL.
Cedar Rapids RoughRiders 4 @ Team USA 5 (OT)
Sonny Milano scored a pair of goals, including the winner in overtime, to lead Team USA’s Under-18 squad to victory. Cedar Rapids jumped out early when Andrew Poturalski scored just over two minutes into the contest, but Team USA responded with a pair of goals over the next three minutes as Alex Tuch and Auston Matthews both found the back of the net. Cedar Rapids took the lead in the second period on goals by Dylan Steman and Alec Marsh. Team USA battled back early in the third as Jack Eichel netted his fifth goal over his last five USHL contests and Milano tallied shorthanded, making the score 4-3. Poturalski would then score his second of the night to even the contest and force overtime. Less than two minutes into the extra sesson, Milano scored his second of the night to give Team USA the win. It was his fourth goal over his last five USHL contests, and second game-winner.
Waterloo Black Hawks 3 @ Sioux City Musketeers 2
Patrick Russell netted two goals to lead Waterloo to their League-leading 17th road win of the season. Sioux City got on the scoreboard less than two minutes into the contest on a goal by Avery Peterson, his second in three games, and then went ahead 2-0 when Trevor Olson scored in just his second game back after sitting out four months due to injury. Waterloo would get on the scoreboard late in the second when Russell netted his 22nd of the season. Russell scored again in the third period and Brandon Montour tallied the winner a few minutes later to complete the Waterloo comeback. Cam Johnson made 36 saves to post the victory while Kyle Hayton had 44 saves in the loss.
Indiana Ice 6 @ Lincoln Stars 1
Scott Conway scored a goal in each period to complete his first USHL hat trick and lead the Ice to their 33rd win of the season. The Ice took advantage of special teams in the first period as defenseman Vince Pedrie netted his fifth of the season and Conway tallied with just over a minute remaining in the opening frame. Conway tallied his second of the night midway through the second period before Jonathan Desbiens got Lincoln on the scoreboard late in the period. It was all Indiana in third as Conway completed his hat trick less than four minutes in, and Patrick Newell added a late empty net goal and Brian Pinho netted his 20th of the season in the closing moments. Hayden Stewart made 28 saves to improve to 8-0-0 since joining the Ice.
Youngstown Phantoms 2 @ Omaha Lancers 5
Ryan Tait and Steven Johnson both scored a pair of goals to lead the Lancers to their 35th win of the season and League-leading 20th win on home ice. Tait opened the scoring just over eight minutes into the contest before defenseman Johnson tallied two goals in less than minutes to make it a 3-0 score through 20 minutes of play. Youngstown responded early in the second as Alfred Larsson scored on the power play and Zach Evancho netted a goal just 22 seconds later to pull the Phantoms within a goal. But that would be all the closer they would get as Tait scored his second of the night a few moments later and Zach Jordan added an empty netter in the closing moments to finish off the victory for Omaha. Hayden Hawkey made 21 saves to earn his 19th win of the season.
Sioux Falls Stampede 5 @ Des Moines Buccaneers 2
Art Brey made 35 saves as the Stampede improved to 3-0-1 over their last four road games. Sioux Falls got on the board in the first period when Christian Horn scored on the power play, pushing his goal streak to four games and bringing his season total to 20 goals. The Stampede extended the lead in the second period when Griffen Molino scored just over eight minutes into the frame and Dakota Joshua netted his 12th of the season six minutes later. Des Moines finally broke through with just over six minutes remaining in the third, but Zeb Knutson responded 34 seconds later with his 50th USHL career goal for the Stampede. Defenseman Garrett Cecere scored the fifth goal of the night for Sioux Falls a few moments later. Des Moines got a goal from Marcel Godbout with just 19 seconds remaining, but it wouldn’t be enough as the night belonged to the Stampede. With the win, Brey improved to 4-0-1 over his last five starts.
Fargo Force 1 @ Green Bay Gamblers 4
The Gamblers scored three shorthanded goals to win their third straight game and 25th victory for the season. Evan Tironese started things for Green Bay just over two minutes after the opening faceoff when he tallied shorthanded, and then Matt Weis scored shorthanded midway through the period, his 19th goal of the season. After a scoreless second period, Ryan Lough netted the third shortie of the night just over three minutes into the final period. Tyler Hynes would finally get Fargo on the scoreboard with his sixth goal over his last eight games, but Green Bay would close it out when Sebastian Weberg netted his 12th of the season. Cam Hackett made 27 saves to pick up his second victory over his last two starts.
Muskegon Lumberjacks 4 @ Tri-City Storm 3
The Lumberjacks scored three goals in the third period to extend their winning streak to three games. Muskegon struck first when defenseman Christian Wolanin scored on the power play late in the first, but Tri-City would respond less than a minute later when defenseman Daniel Fritz scored his first USHL career goal. The Storm took control in the second period when Dan Labosky and Conner Valesano scored just 1:11 apart. Muskegon would battle back in the third as Christopher Dodero scored just over two minutes into the frame and Adam Larkin tied the contest a little more than four minutes later. Midway through the period, Matej Paulovic scored to complete the Muskegon comeback. Eric Schierhorn made 29 saves to earn his third straight victory.
Chicago Steel 4 @ Dubuque Fighting Saints 0
Cale Morris stopped all 33 shots he faced to post his third shutout of the season and lead the Steel to the victory. Chicago wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard as Robby Jackson scored just 39 seconds after the opening faceoff, his sixth goal over the last five games. C.J. Smith then scored shorthanded midway through the period and added a second goal later in the frame to give the Steel a 3-0 lead and give him seven goals over his last eight games. Mason Bergh added the fourth Steel goal just over eight minutes into the second and Morris did the rest of the work, slamming the door shut on Dubuque and improve to 9-0-1 over his last 11 appearances in net for Chicago.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 12th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2013-14. A record 32 players were chosen in the 2013 NHL Draft and more than 300 players on team rosters last season have committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent. For more information, visit us on the web at www.USHL.com or visit the League’s social media platforms, including Facebook (www.facebook.com/ushlhockey), twitter (www.twitter.com/ushl), and YouTube (www.youtube.com/ushlinteractive). Fans can also watch USHL action all season long, live or on-demand via FASTHockey (ushl.fasthockey.com).
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