Waterloo Black Hawks - 2014 USHL Finals
Waterloo Black Hawks

The Waterloo Black Hawks have made their way to the Clark Cup Championship Series for the sixth time as a junior franchise after defeating the Sioux City Musketeers 5-1 Sunday during Game Four of the Semifinals at Tyson Events Center.

For the second consecutive game between Waterloo and Sioux City, the first period was scoreless.  Cal Petersen made his best save during the opening frame with less than a minute remaining, snaring a shot by Garret Cockerill to snuff out a three-on-two rush.  The teams combined to put just 14 shots on net, with Waterloo successfully killing the lone power play during the first 20 minutes.

The Hawks jumped to a two-goal lead late in the second period.  A failed clearing attempt gave Brandon Montour the opportunity to shoot from the right point, and Waterloo capitalized on Drew Melanson’s favorable redirection of that chance at 15:01.  Forty-four seconds later, Liam Pecararo set up Peter Krieger to score on a wrist shot from the left circle in transition.  Petersen turned in another fine save in the final minute before intermission, gloving Adam Johnson’s blast to preserve the margin.

Sioux City drew back within a goal at 6:43 of the third period; a faceoff play set up Neal Pionk for a shot from the right point, and that created the rebound which Brandon Hawkins scored on.  On a power play less than two minutes later, Blake Winiecki reestablished the two-goal margin, snapping in a cross-ice pass by Pecararo.  With 3:29 remaining, Winiecki helped put the game out of reach, streaking up left wing after another big save by Petersen and feeding the puck to Tyler Sheehy to stuff past Collin Olson.  Nineteen seconds later, Zach Sanford scored into an empty net.

Petersen turned away 37 chances for his sixth win of the playoffs.  Olson took the loss with 34 saves.  Waterloo claimed the series in four games, protecting home ice last weekend with 3-2 and 3-1 victories.  Sioux City had taken Game Three in overtime, 4-3, on Friday.

The Clark Cup Championship Series will begin at Young Arena with Games One and Two Friday and Saturday against the Indiana Ice.  The Eastern Conference Champion Ice swept the Dubuque Fighting Saints, concluding the other semifinal series on Friday evening.  Tickets for the Finals will go on sale from waterlooblackhawks.com or by calling the Domino’s Black Hawks Box Office at (319) 291-7680 beginning Monday.

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