GENEVA, ILLINOIS — In a Saturday night showdown between two of the United States Hockey League’s top teams, the Chicago Steel (12-1-1-1, 26 pts.) picked up a 5-3 victory against the Waterloo Black Hawks (10-4-0-1, 21 pts.) at Fox Valley Ice Arena. Chicago defenseman Matt Kiersted recorded a three-point (1-2—3) outing in the win. Chicago sits atop the USHL at the quarter point, suffering just one regulation loss through the first 15 games of the season.
The Steel got on the board early when Eduards Tralmaks registered his first career USHL goal. The Latvian’s tally was registered via redirection, getting a piece of Kiersted’s point shot at 1:18. Later in the period, Kiersted recorded a goal of his own, receiving a feed in the slot from Austen Long and wristing a shot past Waterloo netminder Robbie Beydoun’s glove side at 15:49.
Late in the second period, Waterloo took advantage of its first power play of the game. Black Hawks defender Hank Sorenson fired a shot past the left shoulder of Steel goalie Ales Stezka at 14:28.
Chicago responded with a power play goal of its own. Graham Lillibridge connected a pass to Johnny Walker, who blasted in a one-time rocket at 18:47. Less than a minute later, the Steel struck again, as Kiersted fired a pass from the left point to the far post where Jake Jaremko sniped a shot past Beydoun’s glove at 19:45.
Waterloo switched backstoppers for the third period, but Severi Isokangas did not have much luck to start his stint between the pipes. Just 21 seconds into the frame, Jack Badini collected Austen Long’s end wall rebound and beat Isokangas on the stick side, increasing Chicago’s lead to 5-1. However, the Hawks were not done; Bailey Conger and Shane Bowers posted goals just 26 seconds apart to cut Waterloo’s deficit to two. The visitors continued to pressure until the final horn, including pulling Isokangas for an extra attacker in the final minute, but Chicago held on for the win.
Austen Long tallied two assists for Chicago. Johnny Walker became the second USHL player to reach double-digit goals this season. The Steel were outshot for the first time this season, 29-22. Chicago sweeps the weekend set at home, previously defeating Cedar Rapids Friday, 4-2.
The Steel head up to Wisconsin next weekend for games Friday, Nov. 18 at Madison, and Saturday, Nov. 19 at Green Bay. The road trip then wraps up on Wednesday, Nov. 23 at Cedar Rapids. Chicago returns home to Fox Valley Ice Arena for two games Thanksgiving weekend — Friday, Nov. 25 vs. Lincoln, and Saturday, Nov. 26 vs. Dubuque. The Nov. 25 game is a Family Pack game, and the following night features a full-team post-game autograph session. For tickets or more information, call 855-51-STEEL, stop by the Box Office or visit ChicagoSteelHockeyTeam.com.
Waterloo Black Hawks 3 at Chicago Steel 5 - Status: Final
Saturday, November 12, 2016 - Fox Valley Ice Arena
Waterloo 0 1 2 - 3
Chicago 2 2 1 - 5
1st Period-1, Chicago, Tralmaks 1 (Kiersted, Hakkarainen), 1:18. 2, Chicago, Kiersted 2 (Long, Badini), 15:49. Penalties-Wait Wat (slashing), 16:43.
2nd Period-3, Waterloo, Sorensen 1 (Cates), 14:28 (PP). 4, Chicago, Walker 10 (Lillibridge, Printz), 18:47 (PP). 5, Chicago, Jaremko 5 (Kiersted, Printz), 19:45. Penalties-Ryczek Wat (interference), 4:36; Aamodt Chi (tripping), 14:20; Charyszyn Wat (roughing), 17:02; Wait Wat (holding), 19:30; Johnstone Chi (diving/embellishment), 19:30.
3rd Period-6, Chicago, Badini 5 (Long), 0:21. 7, Waterloo, Conger 4 (Miura, Cates), 6:37. 8, Waterloo, Bowers 8 (Swaney, Charyszyn), 7:03. Penalties-Lillibridge Chi (hooking), 14:57.
Shots on Goal-Waterloo 8-11-10-29. Chicago 7-10-5-22.
Power Play Opportunities-Waterloo 1 / 2; Chicago 1 / 3.
Goalies-Waterloo, Beydoun 5-3-0-1 (17 shots-13 saves); Isokangas 5-1-0-0 (5 shots-4 saves). Chicago, Stezka 5-1-0-1 (29 shots-26 saves).
Referees-Steven Rouillard (33).
Linesmen-Ryan Townsend (55), Rocco Stachowiak (31).