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 Waterloo Black Hawks

Two Quick Ones Upend Hawks

March 2, 2024 - United States Hockey League (USHL)
Waterloo Black Hawks News Release

A pair of Muskegon Lumberjacks first period goals separated by less than a minute left the Waterloo Black Hawks playing from behind throughout a 5-2 Saturday loss at Trinity Health Arena.

Joe Connor had the first of those Muskegon scores. He finished the night with a hat trick. It was the second three-goal performance against the Black Hawks during a three-game eastern trip; Ryan Botterill managed the same accomplishment Thursday when Waterloo visited the Youngstown Phantoms.

The Lumberjacks opened Saturday's scoring at 10:31 of the first period and with one second left on a power play. Connor came from below the icing line to flick in the chance originating at Jack Spicer's right. Muskegon added another goal 32 seconds later. The puck eluded a Waterloo defender in the neutral zone, and Ty Henricks was in alone for a breakaway wrister.

Nick Fascia put the puck into the net a moment after the first period had ended, capping a two-on-one rush, but it was a Waterloo goal that didn't count.

Then Muskegon had the only offense in the second resulting from a two-on-one score. Matvei Gridin's pass across the slot left Connor with an open side at 9:21.

Just over a period later, Connor finished the hat trick with a goal from close range. The chance was created after Jack Galanek forced a turnover in the Waterloo zone.

Landon Nycz broke up Shikhabutdin Gadzhiev's shutout by scoring his first USHL goal with 6:17 to go. Nycz's shot found its way through traffic and inside the post right of the netminder. Myles Hilman added a power play goal at 15:33.

Gridin finished the scoring with an empty netter at 18:55.

The Hawks are back on home ice Friday against the Des Moines Buccaneers. The 7:05 p.m. game is the next College Night at Young Arena, with discounted tickets for all college students available from the Domino's Black Hawks Box Office. It's also the next Family 4-Pack game; for $64, get four tickets, four chuck-a-pucks, and $32 worth of concession vouchers. Order the Family 4-Pack online through

Waterloo 0 0 2 - 2

Muskegon 2 1 2 - 5

1st Period-1, Muskegon, Connor 20 (Gridin, Whitcomb), 10:31 (PP). 2, Muskegon, Henricks 14 (Pierson), 11:03. Penalties-Whitcomb Mus (interference), 1:19; Miller Wat (hooking), 8:32; Veilleux Mus (cross checking), 17:13; Thoreson Wat (roughing), 19:42; Klee Mus (roughing), 19:42.

2nd Period-3, Muskegon, Connor 21 (Gridin), 9:21. Penalties-Mustard Wat (high sticking), 3:09; Erdman Wat (high sticking), 6:28; Whitcomb Mus (hooking), 14:31; Lindberg Wat (major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 20:00; Mustard Wat (major-fighting, game misconduct-continuing altercation, 10-minute misconduct), 20:00; Boisvert Mus (major-fighting, game misconduct-continuing altercation, 10-minute misconduct), 20:00; Nordberg Mus (roughing), 20:00; Spitznagel Mus (major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 20:00.

3rd Period-4, Muskegon, Connor 22 (Galanek), 9:29. 5, Waterloo, Nycz 1 (Thoreson), 13:43. 6, Waterloo, Hilman 21 (Compton), 15:33 (PP). 7, Muskegon, Gridin 27 (Croal), 18:55 (EN). Penalties-Nestrasil Mus (holding), 14:35.

Shots on Goal-Waterloo 10-12-13-35. Muskegon 10-8-9-27.

Power Play Opportunities-Waterloo 1 / 5; Muskegon 1 / 3.

Goalies-Waterloo, Spicer 11-11-0-1 (26 shots-22 saves). Muskegon, Gadzhiev 10-6-0-0 (35 shots-33 saves).


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