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USHL Saturday Recap

03/22/2014, 10:00pm CDT
By bwerger

A recap of Saturday night action in the USHL.

Youngstown Phantoms 3 @ Indiana Ice 4

Brian Pinho recorded a natural hat trick in the second period to lead the Ice to their sixth consecutive victory and help them move into a tie for first place overall in the USHL standings.  Indiana struck first when defenseman Timothy Shoup netted a goal midway through the opening period.  Youngstown would take the lead when Maxim Letunov scored his third goal in a span of two games and Kyle Connor tallied less than four minutes later.  Pinho then took over, scoring three goals in a span of 6:23 to record his first USHL career hat trick.  Connor would score his second of the night midway through the third to pull the Phantoms within a goal, but that would be all the closer they would get as Ice captured the victory.  Goaltender Jason Pawloski made 22 saves to collect his 25th win of the season for Indiana.



Team USA 1 @ Muskegon Lumberjacks 6

Jack Rowe netted a pair of goals as the Lumberjacks won for the fifth time in their last six home games.  Team USA’s Under-17 squad would get things started early as Ryan Wagner scored just 59 seconds after the opening faceoff.  It would be all Muskegon from there as they would score the next six goals.  Rowe tallied just over a minute into the second, Connor Wood netted his sixth of the season a few moments later, and then Rowe scored his second of the period.  The Jacks would then score three more goals over the first six minutes of the third period.  Christian Wolanin and Matej Paulovic would both record their sixth goals of the season before Matt Iacopelli tallied his USHL-leading 38th of the year.  Team USA would get a quality chance late in the game with a Jeremy Bracco penalty shot, but Muskegon goaltender Jordan Uhelski turned it aside, one of his 28 saves to post his 10th win of the season.



Team USA 5 @ Chicago Steel 2

A four-point night (1g, 3a) for defenseman Noah Hanifin helped Team USA’s Under-18 squad earn the victory.  Late in the first, Dylan Larkin started things for Team USA with his third goal over his last two USHL contests.  The lead got extended early in the second when Hanifin and Austin Matthews both converted power play tallies.  It was the sixth goal over the last eight games for Matthews.  Chicago came alive a few moments later when C.J. Smith and Danny Fetzer scored two minutes apart, but less than three minutes later, Ryan Hitchcock scored shorthanded to push the lead back up to two goals.  Colin White would finish things off with a later empty netter for Team USA.  Blake Weyrick made 17 saves to earn the victory.



Omaha Lancers 2 @ Sioux City Musketeers 5

Collin Olson made 36 saves and five different players netted a goal to lead the Musketeers to their 35th win of the season.  Omaha got on the board early in the game when Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson netted a goal less than two minutes into the contest.  Later in the period, Adam Johnson would tie it on his 11th of the season.  Sioux City jumped out early in the second when Bobo Carpenter scored his first USHL goal and Waltteri Hopponen netted his 17th of the year just 33 seconds later.  Ryan Tait would pull the Lancers within a goal midway through the frame, but it would be all the closer they would get.  Brandon Hawkins tallied his 26th goal of the year in the third and then Jake Montgomery closed it out with an empty netter in the final moments.  It was the 10th win of the season for Olson who made 19 of his saves in the third period alone.



Des Moines Buccaneers 2 @ Lincoln Stars 5

Three goals in the third period helped the Stars complete a weekend sweep over Des Moines and extend their win streak to four games.  Defenseman Jared Kolquist put Lincoln on the board midway through the opening frame and then Magnus Hoff tallied his 13th of the season just before the period expired to give the Stars a 2-0 lead.  Marcel Godbout scored late in the second period to pull the Buccaneers within a goal.  Des Moines then tied it early in the third on a Willem Nong-Lambert goal.  Lincoln then took over, scoring the next three goals, as David Parrottino scored his 10th USHL career goal, Christian Lampasson netted his 13th of the season, and Tom Marchin added his second goal in as many nights.  Goaltender Michael Bitzer made 28 saves to post his third win over his last four appearances.



Green Bay Gamblers 5 @ Tri-City Storm 2

The Gamblers scored four goals in the first period to propel them to the victory and snap a four-game losing streak.  Tri-City struck first early in the game when Jake Wahlin netted his first USHL goal, but Aaron O’Neill would respond with his first USHL goal for Green Bay just 21 seconds later to begin a four-goal run by the Gamblers.  Dawson Cook, Ryan Lough, and Ryan Siroky would tally the next three goals to give Green Bay a 4-1 advantage.  Defenseman Grant Hutton netted his first USHL goal late in the second for the Storm, but the night belonged to the visitors as Nick Schmaltz sealed it with a power play tally midway through the third.  It was the third goal over the last five games for Schmaltz.  Cam Hackett made 33 saves in net to earn the victory. 



Fargo Force 4 @ Waterloo Black Hawks 2

Three goals in the first period helped the Force earn their fifth victory over their last six road contests.  Andrew Zerban celebrated his 18th birthday by scoring his sixth goal over his last eight games for the Force midway through the first period.  Tyler Hynes then made it 2-0 when he extended his goal streak to three games with the 25th tally of his USHL career.  Less than two minutes later, Drew Melanson cut the lead in half with a goal for Waterloo, but Mikey scored two minutes later for the third Force goal of the period.  Patrick Russell would again bring the Hawks within a goal on his 26th tally of the season late in the second, but it wouldn’t be enough.  Garick Gray would seal it with an empty netter in the closing moments and the Force skated away with the victory.  Mathias Israelsson made 39 saves for Fargo to collect his fourth win over his last five starts.



Cedar Rapids RoughRiders 3 @ Dubuque Fighting Saints 1

Three goals in the third period led the RoughRiders to their 33rd win of the season and clinch a playoff berth.  It would be a goaltending duel through the first 40 minutes of play as Danny Tirone of Cedar Rapids and Kevin Reich of Dubuque combined to stop all 28 shots thrown their way.  The Riders would then break thru in the third as Alec Marsh netted his 20th USHL career goal just over two minutes into the frame, and then Frederik Tiffels extended his goal streak to three games midway through the period.  Andrew Poturalski made it three straight Riders goals when he tallied his seventh goal over his last five games.  Dubuque would break up the shutout bid in the final minute as Seamus Malone scored with just 44 seconds remaining as the Saints pulled their goalie in favor of the extra attacker.  Danny Tirone made 27 saves for the Riders, earning his fourth victory over his last five starts.



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 or visit the League’s social media platforms, including Facebook (, twitter (, and YouTube (  Fans can also watch USHL action all season long, live or on-demand via FASTHockey (

It’s not just hockey. It’s the USHL.

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