Ross Colton scored the only goal during the final 40 minutes of Friday night’s matchup at Young Arena, lifting the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders past the Waterloo Black Hawks and to the Anderson Cup.
Colton came up the left boards, cut through the circle and across the low slot to flip a backhanded shot past Cale Morris 3:33 into the third period. Cedar Rapids made the resulting lead stand up for the rest of regulation. Goaltender Zack Larocque made 14 stops in the third and 30 for the night.
Coupled with a Green Bay Gamblers Friday loss, the result clinched an outright title for the RoughRiders as the United States Hockey League’s top regular season team in 2015/16.
A relatively high-scoring first period had ended 2-2. Waterloo notched the opening goal just 32 seconds into the game when Michael Davies let go of a shot which Nick Swaney redirected down and in. At 5:01, the RoughRiders tied it on Mitch Reinke’s shot from the right circle, which found its way to the net inside the wide-side post.
Sam McCormick sent the Black Hawks back to the lead, cashing in at 10:53, seconds into a Waterloo power play. Passing between Mikey Anderson and Liam Pecararo set up McCormick in the slot for a shot which rang in off the post. Cedar Rapids leveled the count again at 16:49 when Pavel Tkachkov redirected a Ben Foley blast.
The regular season concludes for Waterloo Saturday with a 7:05 game against the Dubuque Fighting Saints. Good seats remain for Fan Appreciation Night, presented by Next Generation Wireless; 500 lucky fans will take home a new Black Hawks t-shirt. Playoff packages are also available and can be reserved during the game. For tickets, call the Domino’s Black Hawks Box Office at (319) 291-7680 or visit waterlooblackhawks.com.
Cedar Rapids 2 0 1 – 3
Waterloo 2 0 0 – 2
1st Period-1, Waterloo, Swaney 30 (Davies, Hein), 0:32. 2, Cedar Rapids, Reinke 5 (Robbins, Garin), 5:01. 3, Waterloo, McCormick 32 (Pecararo, Anderson), 10:53 (PP). 4, Cedar Rapids, Tkachkov 3 (Sternschein, Foley), 16:49. Penalties-Garin Cr (holding), 5:44; Newhouse Wat (interference), 8:47; Snodgrass Cr (bench minor-too many men), 10:47.
2nd Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Swaney Wat (tripping), 0:33.
3rd Period-5, Cedar Rapids, Colton 34 (McGing, Reinke), 3:33. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Cedar Rapids 8-8-15-31. Waterloo 8-10-14-32.
Power Play Opportunities-Cedar Rapids 0 / 2; Waterloo 1 / 2.
Goalies-Cedar Rapids, LaRocque 3-2-0-0 (32 shots-30 saves). Waterloo, Morris 20-12-1-2 (31 shots-28 saves).
Referees-Andrew Bruggeman (14).
Linesmen-Tony Aronson (67), Elliot Bucholz (43).