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USHL

Ryan O'Hara delivers game-winner in Black Hawks' 2-1 victory

WATERLOO – Right time, right place.

Ryan O’Hara was credited with the goal but he admitted he only played a small part in it.

O’Hara’s shorthanded goal with 6 minutes and 59 seconds left in the second period was the game winner as the Waterloo Black Hawks played one of their more complete games in a 2-1 victory over the Des Moines Buccaneers Friday at Young Arena in United States Hockey League action.

Tied at 1-all, and 14 seconds after Wyatt Schingoethe was sent to the box for tripping, a pure hustle play provided the game winner.

Casey Severo out-raced a Buccaneer defender to puck behind the Des Moines net. Severo check the Des Moines defender to the boards, stole the puck and back-handed a pass to O’Hara who did not miss on the one-timer for his 16th goal and 31st point of the season.

“That was all Sev there,” O’Hara said. “He made a really nice play to pin the D on the wall. He got it on his backhand and from there I was just in front of the net. It was a nice gift for me. I give all the credit to Sev that was a great play by him.”

It was O’Hara’s fourth goal in the last four games and seventh point in his last six.

“What a great play. An absolute great play,” Black Hawks head coach PK O’Handley said of the short-handed goal.

The Black Hawks improved to 13-12-1 at home assuring itself of at least a .500 record inside Young Arena with Saturday season finale with Des Moines on slate Saturday night.

The effort in victory provided Waterloo (21-30-1) with a glimpse of what could’ve been in an injury-filled season. Playing with finally a near healthy team, and getting a boost by three new rookies, the Black Hawks out-shot the Buccaneers in every period and got outstanding goaltending from Charlie Glockner in their second to last game of the regular season.

“It was a really good game,” O’Hara said. “We wish we would’ve played that way all season. That is the way you win games. We executed to a ‘T’ and that was fun to see.”

“It was a good game,” O’Handley added. “I thought our guys competed their tails off. It was fun to see. It was a great game by both teams right down to the end. Great goaltending on both sides.

“I thought our guys played really hard and really played well. The effort was exceptional and I thought the execution went with the effort.”

It was tied 1-all after one period.

Des Moines scored the opening goal on nice pass from Sam Renlund from behind the net that Zach Faremouth one-timed home with 10:48 left in the first period.

Then over the final 10 minutes of the first, the Black Hawks had several strong shifts inside the Buccaneer zone with rookie Garret Schifsky, playing in just seventh game since his high school season finished, scored from an odd angle to the right of Des Moines goalie Remington Koepple. Koepple never saw the puck bury itself in the back of the net with 5:41 left in the period. Nic Belpedio and Ryan O’Hara assisted on the goal.

Schifsky, Jake Rozzi and Carter Batchelder, three affiliate players who recently joined the Black Hawks, continued to give Waterloo spark.

“The affiliates that have come up have done a really nice job,” O’Handley said. “They have embraced the hardness of the league and I think they are a snapshot of what is to come. That is a pretty good three guys.”

Glockner made 30 saves to earn his second consecutive win and his 11th of the season including several big-time stops in the third and over the final 90 seconds when Des Moines pulled its goalie for an extra attacker.

“He played very well,” O’Handley said. “Happy for him that he had the game he had.”

Waterloo 2, Des Moines 1

SCORE BY PERiODS

Des Moines 1 0 0 — 1

Waterloo 1 1 0 — 2

FIRST PERIOD – 1. Des Moines, Zach Faremouth (Sam Renlund, Tiernan Shoudy), 9:12, 2. Waterloo, Garrett Shifsky (Nic Belpedio, Ryan O’Hara), 14:19. Penalties – Michael Bevilacqua, DM (roughing), 4:32, Kyler Kleven, Wat (roughing), 4:32.

SECOND PERIOD – 3. Waterloo, Ryan O’Hara (Casey Severo, Mason Reiners), 13:01, sh. Penalties – Killian Kiecker-Olson, DM (high sticking), 1:10, Wyatt Schingoethe, Wat (tripping), 12:47.

THIRD PERIOD – No scoring. Penalties – Owen Ozar, Wat (roughing), 12:15, Alex LaFerriere, DM (roughing), 12:15, Renlund, DM (checking from behind), 12:15.

SHOTS ON GOAL

Des Moines 13 9 9 — 31

Waterloo 16 10 13— 39

Goalies – Des Moines, Remington Keopple (37 Saves). Waterloo, Charlie Glockner (30 Saves). Referees – Tyler Hascall. Linesmen – Kyle Bushee, David Rozitis.

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Sports Reporter

I’m a Waterloo native who has covered Cedar Valley sports for more than 30 years for the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier. I’m also a big Cincinnati Reds fan … Go Big Red Machine!

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