With a 5-0 victory against the Chicago Steel, Cale Morris set a new Waterloo Black Hawks record for junior era shutouts, while helping the Hawks climb in the USHL Western Conference standings Thursday at Young Arena.
The win moved Waterloo to third place in the conference. The 26-save shutout was Morris’ seventh whitewash since being acquired from Chicago in January of 2015. It breaks a tie between the Notre Dame-recruit and former Hawks goalie Kevin Regan (2003/04) for club honors. Just last Friday, Chicago had denied a Morris shutout bid, scoring their lone goal with under two minutes remaining during a 4-1 decision.
Morris delivered the biggest highlight during a scoreless opening period. With just over eight minutes remaining, the Black Hawk netminder used his right pad to turn away an Austen Long backhander after the Chicago forward cut in on a breakaway.
A power play opportunity cued the Black Hawks offense during the second period. In the waning seconds of an advantage, Jake Ryczek’s chance from the slot was redirected in by Ronnie Hein at 12:03. A little more than two minutes later, Nick Swaney struck in transition, scooting across the slot and putting in a low chance from the right circle.
Hein capped the second period, scoring with 32.2 seconds showing on the clock. Ryan Lohin’s centering pass bounced in off Hein’s right skate. A review confirmed the goal.
Liam Pecararo made Waterloo two-for-two on the power play 3:15 into the third period, rolling a shot off of goaltender John Lethemon and into the net after storming up left wing. Morris helped trigger the rush and picked up an assist on the play.
Sam McCormick capped the evening by snapping the Hawks’ fifth goal under the crossbar at 11:56. The Steel persisted during the late minutes of the third, forcing Morris to make 14 saves in the period, his busiest of the night.
Friday the Hawks take to the road against the Sioux City Musketeers. The week wraps up on home ice Saturday when Waterloo faces the Green Bay Gamblers at Young Arena on UNI Panther Night. The Stanley Cup will be on hand for fans to view up close, as well. For tickets, call the Domino’s Black Hawks Box Office at (319) 291-7680 or visit waterlooblackhawks.com.
Chicago 0 0 0 – 0
Waterloo 0 3 2 – 5
1st Period- No Scoring.Penalties-No Penalties
2nd Period-1, Waterloo, Hein 11 (Ryczek, Swaney), 12:03 (PP). 2, Waterloo, Swaney 27 (Ryczek, Davies), 15:05. 3, Waterloo, Hein 12 (Lohin), 19:28. Penalties-Terao Wat (too many men), 2:12; Evingson Chi (tripping), 10:09; Ryczek Wat (hooking), 16:14.
3rd Period-4, Waterloo, Pecararo 13 (Anderson, Morris), 3:15 (PP). 5, Waterloo, McCormick 28 (Lohin, Pecararo), 11:56. Penalties-Rakhmatov Chi (holding), 2:00.
Shots on Goal-Chicago 8-4-14-26. Waterloo 7-15-11-33.
Power Play Opportunities-Chicago 0 / 2; Waterloo 2 / 2.
Goalies-Chicago, Lethemon 12-12-3-0 (33 shots-28 saves). Waterloo, Morris 18-10-1-2 (26 shots-26 saves).
Referees-Jim White (22).
Linesmen-William Hancock (91), Tyler Loftus (76).