The Waterloo Black Hawks won all five games during their longest stretch on home ice this season, capped with a 3-1 victory Saturday against the Muskegon Lumberjacks.
A bad bounce for the Lumberjacks turned into a beautiful goal for Vladislav Firstov to open the scoring. Skating four-on-four, Muskegon played the puck behind their own net; it deflected right to the top of the crease. Firstov was the only player in the neighborhood, and he stickhandled goalie Brandon Bussi down before slipping a backhander past Bussi’s left skate at 11:52.
Early in the second, the Black Hawks added to their lead. At 2:08, Xander Lamppa sent a pass from the left boards into the slot, and Solag Bakich connected on a one-touch shot to beat Bussi to the short side. A little over four minutes later, Waterloo was on a power play when Emil Orhvall was handling the puck near the top of the right circle. With Griffin Ness setting a screen at the top of the crease, Ohrvall whipped a wrister between the pipes.
The Lumberjacks scored in transition at 9:43 of the second. Ryan Savage swooped through the right circle to pick up a puck which had gotten away from Bobby Lynch. Savage cut across the top of the crease and pushed a backhander past Logan Stein.
Stein stopped everything else which the USHL’s highest-scoring team sent his way. That included 15 third period saves. For the night, Stein denied the Lumberjacks on 30 of their 31 chances.
The Hawks go on the road Friday to meet the Des Moines Buccaneers.
Muskegon 0 1 0 - 1
Waterloo 1 2 0 - 3
1st Period-1, Waterloo, Firstov 19 11:52. Penalties-Paul Wat (high sticking dbl minor), 7:01; Afanasyev Mus (holding), 10:00; Palmer Wat (tripping), 10:46; Caponi Wat (tripping), 17:47.
2nd Period-2, Waterloo, Bakich 6 (Lamppa, Bengtsson), 2:08. 3, Waterloo, Öhrvall 21 (Szmagaj), 6:21 (PP). 4, Muskegon, Savage 10 (Lynch, Bukes), 9:43. Penalties-Farris Mus (major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 2:49; Cameron Wat (major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 2:49; Afanasyev Mus (hooking), 5:22; Sullivan Mus (roughing), 9:24; Öhrvall Wat (roughing), 9:24; Palmer Wat (misconduct-unsportsmanlike conduct), 9:24; Gushchin Mus (head contact), 10:39; Staudacher Mus (interference), 15:28; Yakovenko Mus (interference), 20:00.
3rd Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Sullivan Mus (roughing), 19:50; Marooney Wat (roughing), 19:50.
Shots on Goal-Muskegon 11-5-15-31. Waterloo 8-14-8-30.
Power Play Opportunities-Muskegon 0 / 4; Waterloo 1 / 4.
Goalies-Muskegon, Bussi 24-7-2-1 (30 shots-27 saves). Waterloo, Stein 13-3-1-0 (31 shots-30 saves).
Referees-Matt Larson, Michael Menard.
Linesmen-Tony Aronson (67), Nick Klinkhammer (39).