Black Hawks Win, Lead Anderson Cup Race
Two second period goals by Tyler Sheehy made the difference as the Waterloo Black Hawks picked up a team-record 20th road win of the season,4-3, against the Green Bay Gamblers Sunday.
With the decision, the Hawks also moved into sole possession of first place in the United States Hockey League, breaking a tie with the Indiana Ice. Waterloo has two games remaining during the regular season, while the Ice play three times, beginning with a Tuesday tilt against the Dubuque Fighting Saints.
Black Hawks at the front of the net were responsible for two first period goals Sunday, with two Green Bay tallies sandwiched between. Blake Winiecki opened the scoring on a put-back following Peter Krieger’s shot at 8:04. Green Bay tied the game at 13:16, then took the lead 48 seconds later on a pair of goals in transition by Matthew Weis and Ryan Siroky. However, with 50.1 seconds to go before intermission, Brandon Montour’s point shot deflected to Patrick Russell, who slipped in a backhander.
Sheehy seized control of the game late in the second period. After Cam Hackett made a spectacular save on the Waterloo forward during a power play, Sheehy capitalized on his next big opportunity at 14:42. A Gambler giveaway left Sheehy alone with the puck in the slot, and he rifled a shot past Hackett. Then less than two minutes later, Drew Melanson frustrated Green Bay during a power play by pinning the puck to the boards. When Nick Schmaltz worked it free, Sheehy picked his pocket and scored on ashorthanded wraparound.
It took Green Bay literally until the game’s final moment to get a goal back. Connor Hurley flipped a shot through traffic and into the net as the horn was sounding to end the contest. The goal was ruled to be good at 19:59.9, and the game officially came to an end when the puck was dropped subsequently at center.
Cal Petersen made 30 saves for the 50th regular season win of his Black Hawks career. Hackett turned away 27 Waterloo shots.
Waterloo’s regular season concludes next weekend when the Hawks play a home-and-home series against the RoughRiders, starting in Cedar Rapids Friday. Tickets for Saturday’s regular season finale at Young Arena are on sale from waterlooblackhawks.com or by calling the Black Hawks Box Office at (319) 291-7680.