PHANTOMS' DEFENSE HOLDS STRONG AS SAINTS FALL SHORT
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - Shorthanded up front and playing for the third time in two and a half days, the Dubuque Fighting Saints put forth a valiant third period effort and fell just short. The Youngstown Phantoms struck twice on the power play in the second period and held on en route to a 2-1 victory over the Saints on Sunday afternoon at the Covelli Centre.
Phantoms goaltender Ivan Prosvetov was the story of the game as top star of the game and the last line of defense to fend off 43 shots on goal, including 20 of them in the third period alone. He turned away all but one, and along with his penalty killers, turned away four Fighting Saints power play opportunities.
Matthew Barry's goal at the 6:17 mark of the second period was enough for the Phantoms in this low-scoring affair. Mike Regush found him lurking on the back door on a Youngstown power play and tapped the puck into an open cage past Cole Weaver to give Youngstown a lead they would not relinquish.
Strikes in quick succession set up a tie game, which did not last long. Matt Thomson scored a power play goal on a rebound following a shorthanded bid by the Saints. That lead lasted 100 seconds. Quinn Preston slipped a puck to the point, where Roman Kinal wired home a wrist shot from the left point for his first goal in his USHL career.
Weaver did his part in the net for the Fighting Saints, as he stopped 27 of 29 opportunities fired his way by the Phantoms. Most importantly, Weaver held off a furious push by Youngstown early in the game, including being outshot 13-3 in the first ten minutes of the opening period.
The Saints pick up their busy schedule next Friday at The Stable to begin a back-to-back with the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. Catch all of the action on Dubuque's Super Hits 106.1 FM, or on the USHL's streaming video provider, HockeyTV.
About the Dubuque Fighting Saints: The Fighting Saints returned to USHL play in the brand new Mystique Community Ice Center during the 2010-11 season, winning the Clark Cup in their first year back in the USHL. The Fighting Saints continued their success with a historic season in 2012 - 13, finishing with a franchise best 45 - 11â=80=908 record. The team claimed the Anderson Cup as the USHL's regular season champions for the first time in 30 years, and also earned the Clark Cup for second time in three seasons. In August 2013, the team took the Bronze Medal while representing the United States at the Junior Club World Cup in Omsk, Russia. The Fighting Saints have reached the Clark Cup Final three times in the past seven seasons, and has made it to the Clark Cup Playoffs for seven consecutive seasons. The club has produced a number of players that moved on to NCAA Division I hockey and have been drafted by NHL teams, including Zemgus Girgensons, Johnny Gaudreau, Mike Matheson and Matt Benning. The original Fighting Saints competed in the USHL for 21 seasons (1980-2001). The club won the Clark Cup as playoff champions on three occasions (1981, 1983, 1985) under head coach Jack Barzee.
About Northern Lights Hockey, LLC: Northern Lights Hockey, LLC is the company that owns and operates the USHL franchise in Dubuque, Iowa. The owners of Northern Lights Hockey, LLC collectively provide an extensive background in both business and hockey, and represent interests on a national and local level. Philip Falcone, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of HC2 Holdings, Inc. and former part owner of the NHL's Minnesota Wild, is the company's principal owner. The ownership group also includes Peter Chiarelli, Edmonton Oilers President of Hockey Operations and General Manager, Mark Falcone, and Brad Kwong, Managing Partner of Northern Lights Hockey, LLC. Philip Falcone, Chiarelli and Kwong all played hockey together at Harvard University in the mid-1980s. The group also includes local Iowan partners Mark Falb and David S. Field, M.D. Falb currently serves as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Westmark Enterprises, Inc. and Kendall / Hunt Publishing Company. Dr. Field has practiced orthopedic surgery for over 30 years and has been the driving force behind hockey in Dubuque. Dr. Field also owned the Dubuque Thunderbirds, the USA Hockey Tier III team that competed in the Central States Hockey League through the 2009-10 season.
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