The Dubuque Fighting Saints won 6-2 Saturday at Young Arena, in a game which ultimately had no impact on their position in the United States Hockey League standings, nor on the Waterloo Black Hawks playoff seed.
Both Waterloo and Dubuque entered the night third in their respective conference and finished in the same position. The Hawks will now face the Lincoln Stars during a first round, best-of-five playoff series. The Saints will meet the Green Bay Gamblers in the Eastern Conference postseason.
At the end of one period, a Dubuque power play goal was the difference in a 2-1 contest. The Fighting Saints took the lead at 2:44 when Colin Theisen swiped the puck deep in Black Hawks territory and wrapped it into the net off of goaltender Garrett Metcalf. During the final seconds of a major power play, Dubuque struck again at 14:02. The puck came off the right boards and to the top of the crease for Willie Knierim, who flipped in a backhander.
Waterloo drew within one before intermission. With 2:30 showing on the clock, Hunter Miska stopped a transition chance, but Kevin Charyszyn followed up and pushed the rebound across the goal line.
During a power play 4:53 into the second period, Yuri Terao blasted a one-timer into the net to tie the score at 2-2. However, the Saints seized control with a late surge. Goals separated by less than a minute from Brett Boing and Michael O’Leary at 14:13 and 14:56 sprang the visitors back to a two-goal margin. Evan Smith added another at 15:54.
Gordie Green capped the scoring at 11:20 of the third, knocking the puck past Metcalf’s left skate.
After going to Lincoln to begin the playoffs in Games One and Two, Waterloo will host Game Three of the first round set at Young Arena on Saturday, April 23rd. Playoff ticket packages are available for all Hawks postseason home games. For details, call the Hawks at (319) 232-3444.
Dubuque 2 3 1 – 6
Waterloo 1 1 0 – 2
1st Period-1, Dubuque, Theisen 14 2:44. 2, Dubuque, Knierim 14 (Young, Boeing), 14:02 (PP). 3, Waterloo, Charyszyn 6 (Yon, Cotton), 17:30. Penalties-Sucese Dub (tripping), 6:17; Solow Dub (roughing), 9:12; Sorensen Wat (major-charging, game ejection-charging), 9:12; Gerads Dub (roughing), 17:48.
2nd Period-4, Waterloo, Terao 18 (Anderson, Pecararo), 4:53 (PP). 5, Dubuque, Boeing 6 (Kavanagh, Ford), 14:13. 6, Dubuque, O’Leary 8 (Boeing), 14:56. 7, Dubuque, Smith 17 (Solow, Smith), 15:54. Penalties-Sucese Dub (tripping), 3:12; Cotton Wat (hooking), 6:01.
3rd Period-8, Dubuque, Green 12 (Smith), 11:20. Penalties-Zuhlsdorf Dub (interference), 4:10; Bowers Wat (roughing), 15:02.
Shots on Goal-Dubuque 7-21-12-40. Waterloo 10-5-7-22.
Power Play Opportunities-Dubuque 1 / 3; Waterloo 1 / 5.
Goalies-Dubuque, Miska 32-13-1-0 (22 shots-20 saves). Waterloo, Metcalf 13-16-2-2 (40 shots-34 saves).
Referees-Liam Sewell (25).
Linesmen-Jonathan Sladek (46), John Tallieu (38).