Waterloo Black Hawks Preview is presented by Iowa Donor Network.
Between the Missouri and the Mississippi
For the third time during a five-week span, the Waterloo Black Hawks play three games in three days. The action begins Friday against the Sioux City Musketeers. Sioux City has been one of Waterloo’s opponents during each of the prior two sequences. In fact, when the Hawks were on the ice for their first three-game weekend during October, Sioux City was on the opposite bench at the end. After trading shots with the Muskies, Waterloo will visit the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders on Saturday, before completing the skein Sunday versus the Des Moines Buccaneers. The Hawks are currently 4-6-2 against their four in-state rivals in 2015/16. The group also includes the Dubuque Fighting Saints, in addition to Sioux City, Cedar Rapids, and Des Moines.
Hein Holds His Own
Black Hawks’ Captain Ronnie Hein was held without a point during two weekend contests against the Dubuque Fighting Saints. However, the Ohio State recruit was still +1, pushing his team-best plus/minus differential to +16. He is tied for 11th in the United States Hockey League in that statistical category. Joining Waterloo midway through the 2014/15 campaign, Hein was +6 in 33 appearances last year. A season ago, Tom Novak finished with a Hawks-high +14 differential, which tied him for 42nd on a league-wide basis.
Last weekend, Waterloo earned two standings points by way of a 4-3 overtime loss Friday and a 3-2 shootout defeat Saturday, both at the hands of the Dubuque Fighting Saints. With those results, four of the eight games played thus far in the Dupaco Cowbell Cup series (which also includes the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders) have been extended beyond 60 minutes. The Hawks meet the RoughRiders on Saturday; the teams went to a shootout, which Waterloo won 4-3, on New Year’s Eve. As for Waterloo’s general overtime results, ten of 43 Black Hawks games have been settled outside of regulation this season. The Hawks have won four times during the seven-minute overtime period and twice in shootout situations.
Ryczek Rolls In
Defenseman Jake Ryczek recorded assists in each of his first two games. Both points were delivered in power play situations, adding to a recent productive trend: the Hawks have notched a power play goal during five of their last six games. Ryczek is a particularly adept power play scorer: 12 of his 16 points this season and 24 of 34 during his league career have been tallied on special teams.
Liam Pecararo had a goal and an assist Friday, then repeated the performance on Saturday. However, the Dubuque Fighting Saints claimed wins each night: 4-3 in overtime Friday and 3-2 in a shootout Saturday.
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It’s Ladies Night when the Black Hawks face the Sioux City Musketeers on Friday. Come out to the rink for the chance to win prizes and a night of fun!