Waterloo Black Hawks Weekly Preview
Tri-City in Twos
The Black Hawks play on back-to-back nights against the Tri-City Storm this Friday and Saturday at Viaero Center in Kearney, Nebraska. Both contests begin at 7:05 p.m. It will be the second time in the last four weekends that Waterloo and Tri-City have played a pair of games against each other. On February 13th and 14th, the Hawks earned a 5-4 win before falling 2-0 in the follow-up tilt. The two teams will complete their season series with two more games in close proximity: March 14th (in Waterloo) and March 18th (in Kearney).
Special Teams Matchup
Waterloo will try to overcome the Storm's top-ranked penalty-killing unit this weekend. Tri-City stopped the Hawks on five power play chances during the February meetings between the teams, and the Strom rank first in the league, allowing opponents to score on just 9.2 percent of power plays. Overall, Waterloo has been limited to one power play goal in their last 25 chances, but this season the Hawks have enjoyed more special teams success on the road, converting at a 23.3 percent rate while away versus 12 percent at Young Arena.
Sasson Approaches 19/20 Season Totals
Max Sasson leads the Black Hawks with 23 points (nine goals, 14 assists) in 31 appearances this season. He is just two goals shy of equaling his marks from last winter (11 goals and 14 assists for 25 points in 45 games for the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders). The Western Michigan recruit is in his third USHL season; in 2018/19, he produced eight goals and nine assists in 62 contests.
Black Hawks captain Dane Montgomery led the team with 11 points in 10 February games as Waterloo produced a 4-6-0 record last month. Montgomery and Alex Gaffney each had a team-high five goals. As a club, scoring was up slightly in February; the team was credited with 33 total goals after having 28 in each of the prior two months. In the crease, goaltenders Emmett Croteau and Charlie Glockner both earned a pair of victories. Croteau saw the most ice time with 236 minutes in net. Both of his wins came on nights which finished with either overtime or a shootout.
A Hawks comeback fell short in Omaha Friday. After the Lancers pulled to a 4-0 lead, Max Sasson had a goal and an assist, but Waterloo could not draw closer than a 4-2 deficit, eventually allowing two empty net goals for a 6-2 final. The Hawks did rally for a 7-6 overtime win against the Chicago Steel on Saturday. At one point, Waterloo trailed 6-3 in the third period. Captain Dane Montgomery finished the night with two goals and two assists, with Mason Reiners producing the overtime winner.
For complete box scores from previous Black Hawks games, visit ushl.com.
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