Black Hawks Complete Comeback to Defeat Force
The Waterloo Black Hawks rallied from three separated one-goal deficits to stun the Fargo Force 5-4 in overtime Saturday (Dec. 17, 2016) at Scheels Arena.
The most dramatic of the three tying goals came during the final minute of regulation. The Hawks were on a power play, plus goalie Robbie Beydoun was on the bench for a sixth attacker.
After a long period with the puck lodged along the kick plate behind the Fargo net, it finally squirted free to Yuki Miura. The 20-year-old found Hank Sorensen barreling up the slot, and Sorensen tied the game by beating Matthew Murray with 30 seconds remaining.
After that last minute goal, Waterloo scored the winner during the final 60 seconds of overtime. Jackson Cates worked the puck up the ice and left it for Bailey Conger in the offensive zone. Crisscrossing with Cates, Conger backed down the Fargo defense and fired his shot under the crossbar with 32 seconds to go before the contest would have been settled in a shootout.
Michael Zuffante had been responsible for the only goal of the first period when he went to the front of the net at 6:38 to put the Hawks ahead for the only time in regulation. Shane Bowers cut behind the Fargo goal and centered the puck from there. Zuffante got a piece of it, and it trickled off of a Fargo defender across the goal line.
The Force tied the score then took the lead during the first nine minutes of the second. Grant Meyer equalized at 3:56, and the goal stood – despite a video review – although Beydoun was being knocked backwards as the net was dislodged behind him. Jack Adams nudged the home team in front with a power play goal at 8:21.
Northern Minnesotan Ethan Johnson gave the Hawks their first two tying goals. On a rush with Jack Drury at 10:51, Johnson’s shot handcuffed Murray and bounced into the net. Johnson tied the game again at 10:02 of the third, firing a shot into an open side on a setup by Garrett Klee just seconds after the Hawks had finished killing a Fargo power play.
Brian Hurley’s power play one-timer with 47 seconds remaining in the second period had provided the opportunity for Johnson to tie the contest a second time. Michael Graham recorded Fargo’s final tally with 5:27 to go in regulation, coming on a change to score from close range with he was set up from behind the Waterloo net.
Beydoun picked up his second win against his former team. He made a season-high 40 saves. Murray made 33 stops at the other end of the rink.
The Black Hawks take the ice one final time before Christmas on Sunday afternoon, meeting the Sioux Falls Stampede at Sanford Premier Center. Waterloo’s next home game is on New Year’s Eve against the Madison Capitols at 6:05 p.m.