PK O'Handley, Waterloo Black Hawks (courtesy Hickling Images)
Below is a recap of Saturday's USHL games:
The Chicago Steel are now 8-2 in their last 10 games and alone in second place in the Eastern Conference with their 7-2 victory over the Youngstown Phantoms. The Steel scored five times in the second period en route to victory and picked up goals from seven different players - Nick Abruzzese, Gunnarwofe Fontaine, Josh Groll, Travis Treloar, Adam Robbins, Owen Power and Neil Shea. Abruzzese and Shea dished out two assists each for three-point nights and Reilly Herbst made 17 saves on 19 shots for his fourth consecutive victory.
On ugly sweater night at the Stable, the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders picked up a 5-2 victory over the Central Illinois Flying Aces. The RoughRiders were led by Jason Polin, who recorded a natural hat trick and scored the only three goals of the opening period. Nathan Smith added a goal and two assists, Aidan McDonough (1G, 1A) and Will Zmolek (0G, 2A) picked up two points each and Troy Kobryn recorded his second victory of the weekend with a 22-save performance.
The Fargo Force have now won seven of their last 10 games and are tied for fourth place in the Western Conference thanks to their 5-0 shutout of the Western Conference-leading Tri-City Storm. After taking a 1-0 lead in the first period with a Ben Meyers goal, his 17th of the season, two Hank Crone tallies and Ross Mitton's third of the year made it a 4-0 game after two periods. Cedric Fiedler's first of the year in the third period completed the scoring. Crone added an assist for a three-point night and Ryan Bischel stopped all 24 shots he faced for his 12th win of the year.
Des Moines has now won four of their last five games with their 3-0 shutout of the Lincoln Stars at the Ice Box. Following a scoreless first period, TJ Walsh's 10th goal of the year opened the scoring. Luke Manning doubled the Buccaneers lead at 10:25 of the third period and Mac Welsher added an empty net goal to complete the scoring and secure the shutout victory. Anaheim Ducks prospect Roman Durny stopped all 27 shots he faced for his fourth straight win and second shutout of the year.
The Waterloo Black Hawks picked up a 5-3 road victory in Madison for their fourth straight win. The victory also marked head coach PK O'Handley's 700th career USHL regular season win, the most in USHL history, making him the first and only coach in league history to reach the milestone. Kyle Haskins led the way offensively for the visitors, picking up his first USHL hat trick in the victory. Vladislav Firstov and Dane Montgomery also scored for Waterloo. Chase Brand, Chaz Smedsrud and Christian Berger found the back of the net for the Capitols. Joe Cassetti and Ryan Drkulec dished out a pair of assists each and Logan Stein made 25 saves for his fifth win in his last six starts.
In a hard-fought back and forth game, the Omaha Lancers knocked off the Muskegon Lumberjacks 1-0 in overtime, marking Muskegon's first overtime loss of the season. The two teams played to a scoreless tie through 60 minutes of play, with the Lumberjacks outshooting the Lancers 32-29. Just 16 seconds into overtime, Harrison Roy, who was traded to Omaha from Cedar Rapids earlier in the week, scored the overtime winner in his second game with his new team. Kalle Eriksson added the lone assist on the tally, and New Jersey Devils prospect Akira Schmid stopped all 32 shots he faced to notch his second win of the season.
Dubuque has now earned points in each of their last five games with a 2-1 road victory in Sioux City. All the scoring in the game came in the first period of play. The Fighting Saints' Logan Pietila opened the scoring at 6:40 before Calgary Flames prospect Martin Pospisil tied the game just over three minutes later. It remained a 1-1 game until late in the frame, when Matias Maccelli's 14th goal of the year gave the visitors the lead, which they would hold onto for the remainder of the game. Maccelli added an assist on Pietila's goal for a two-point night, and extended his point streak to 13 games, the second-longest point streak this season. Vancouver Canucks prospect Matthew Thiessen's 23-save effort was good for his seventh victory of the season.
The Sioux Falls Stampede have won five of their last six games thanks to a 6-1 victory over the Green Bay Gamblers. Following a scoreless first period, the Stampede scored the first six goals of the game. Blake Bride, Jared Westcott, Brian Chambers and Anthony Romano all found the back of the net in the second period, while Chambers and Romano scored again in the third period, making it a 6-0 game at one point. Green Bay's Austin Heidemann scored in the third period to complete the scoring. Westcott dished out three assists for a four-point night and Alec Calvaruso stopped 20 of the 21 Gamblers shots he faced to move to 3-0 in his USHL career, with all three wins coming in the last three days.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 17th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2018-19. The USHL had a record 45 players selected at the 2018 NHL Draft, more than any junior league in the world, 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.
Tag(s): Game Highlights