Saints and RoughRiders on the Schedule
The Black Hawks have a busy week ahead, but they will be staying close to home for all three of their games. Tuesday and Friday, Waterloo hosts the Dubuque Fighting Saints and the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders respectively. Saturday, the Hawks will complete the sequence by visiting Cedar Rapids. All three games begin at 7:05 p.m. Waterloo is 2-3-0 versus the Fighting Saints this winter; Dubuque won the most recent game, 4-1 on January 18th at Mystique Ice Center. The Hawks and RoughRiders last met on November 30th; a 1-0 Waterloo win in that game improved the Hawks to 4-1-0 in the head-to-head series.
February’s Eastern Orientation
Beginning with Tuesday’s game against Dubuque through the end of the month, all of the Black Hawks’ remaining February games will be against opponents from the United States Hockey League Eastern Conference. Waterloo is 12-5-1 in non-conference matchups during 2019/20. After February, the Hawks will see Eastern Conference teams just three more times this season (Dubuque twice and Cedar Rapids once).
Hawks Home Wins
The Black Hawks seek their 15th Young Arena victory of the season this week. Playing in front of a friendly crowd, Waterloo has opened the 30-game Commercial Street schedule 14-4-0. The Hawks have won at least 15 games at Young Arena each of the previous eight seasons. The best mark during that span was 24-4-2 in 2016/17. Last year, Waterloo was 19-7-4 at Young Arena.
Scoring a Plus for Ness
Griffin Ness provided a scoring surge on Saturday with a goal and three assists during Waterloo’s 5-2 win against the Fargo Force. It was his ninth multipoint game during 2019/20 and came 15 days after he had six points in a win against the Muskegon Lumberjacks. Ness now has 37 points (15 goals, 22 assists) this season to rank second in team scoring. His plus/minus differential has also zoomed up to +21, tied for the team lead with Brehdan Engum. Ness and Engum are among a group of four USHL players at +21, tied for fourth in the league. Since the beginning of January, Ness has been +12 in 12 appearances.
Protecting home ice, the Black Hawks earned all four possible points from two weekend games against the Fargo Force. Friday, Ryder Rolston’s decisive goal sent Waterloo to a 2-1 overtime win. It was Rolston’s second overtime goal of the season and moved the Hawks to 7-2 in overtime or shootout situations. Saturday, Waterloo prevailed 5-2 on the strength of a four-goal second period. Griffin Ness, Luke Bast, and Aaron Bohlinger each had multiple points during the game.
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It’s a $2 Tuesday when Waterloo hosts Dubuque, featuring $2 hot dogs, nachos, and soda. For tickets, call the Domino’s Black Hawks Box Office at (319) 291-7680.