Steel Face Tough Weekend Road Test
GENEVA, ILLINOIS - Coming off 10 games in the month of February, culminating in a record of 7-2-1-0 for the month, the Chicago Steel begin the playoff push with an overall mark of 24-8-3-0 (51 pts.) placing the team atop the USHL standings with eight weeks remaining in the regular season.
The Steel face two of the top four clubs in the Eastern Conference this weekend to complete a period of eight consecutive road games, the longest stretch as the visitors for the team during the 2020-2021 slate.
Last weekend was highlighted by Steel forwards Matt Coronato and Sean Farrell claiming sole possession of all-time Chicago scoring records on Feb. 26 in an 8-7 overtime win against the Des Moines Buccaneers.
Coronato tallied two goals to tie and pass Robert Mastrosimone (Steel 2017-2019) for most career goals in a Steel uniform with 48. Adding a marker on Feb. 27 in a 7-6 overtime loss against the Waterloo Black Hawks, Coronato's career mark now stands at 49 tallies over two seasons. The Harvard University-bound forward's next point will give him 100 points during his Chicago career, a feat accomplished by just eight other players in franchise history.
With six helpers last weekend, Farrell, a native of Hopkinton, Mass., shattered the Steel career assist record which stood at 84 held by Dan Charleston (Steel 2002-2005). The Montreal Canadiens prospect now owns the franchise record with 88 helpers over 78 games played in a Steel uniform. Farrell was awarded USHL Forward of the Week for his eight-point (2G, 6A) performance over two games on Feb. 26 and 27.
Farrell enters this weekend needing just one point to tie Charleston's record for points in a Steel career (124P).
Chicago makes the trek to Michigan to face off against the second-place Muskegon Lumberjacks (21-11-1-2; 45 pts.) in a back-to-back set at Mercy Health Arena on Friday, March 5 and Saturday, March 6 with both games scheduled for 6:00 pm CT.
The Lumberjacks are the only team in the USHL against whom the Steel have a losing record this season. Chicago has gone 2-3-1-0 in six games with four contests remaining in the 10-game regular season series. Muskegon has won its last five games to pull within six points of the conference-leading Steel.
Muskegon's leading scorers, Cameron Berg (19G, 22A) and Danil Gushchin (17G, 22A) rank fifth and seventh, respectively, in USHL points this season. Lumberjacks rookie defenseman Jacob Guevin holds the top spot among all USHL rookies with 19 helpers in 35 games. Both Berg and Guevin were listed as 'C'-level prospects by NHL Central Scouting in the most recent watch list release on Jan. 21, 2021.
Chicago enters the Sunday showdown against Team USA (U18) following a 5-4 loss in the clubs' most recent meeting on Feb. 19 at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Mich. Chaz Lucius, an 'A'-level prospect listed on NHL Central Scouting's most recent watch list released on Jan. 21, 2021, scored two goals in his first USHL action of the season against Chicago.
The Steel return to home ice at Fox Valley Ice Arena with 12 out of the team's final 16 games at home, starting with a three-game homestand on March 12 & 13 against the Green Bay Gamblers with both games starting at 7:05 pm CT and a Sunday matinee at 3:05 pm CT against Team USA (U17).
Chicago Steel games can be heard on Mixlr at http://mixlr.com/chicago-steel/ (FREE AUDIO) and video may be streamed on available devices through HockeyTV at www.hockeytv.com (STREAM).
Chicago Steel Upcoming Games presented by Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush:
Friday, March 5 at Muskegon Lumberjacks (6:00 pm CT)
Saturday, March 6 at Muskegon Lumberjacks (6:00 pm CT)
Sunday, March 7 at Team USA (U18) (3:00 pm CT)
For more information, call 855-51-STEEL or visit ChicagoSteelHockeyTeam.com.
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