On Saturday, Jackson Cates became only the third United States Hockey League player to reach the 50-point threshold this season, and Monday the USHL recognized the Waterloo Black Hawks’ leading scorer as its Forward of the Week.

The 20-year-old has steadily climbed among the league’s top offensive talents. With 50 points, Cates ranks third in that category, while his 27 goals stand second in the USHL. He is also highly-placed in several other metrics, including power play goals (10, tied-1st), shots on goal (155, tied-4th), game-winning goals (4, tied-9th), points per game (1.14, 11th), and assists (23, tied-17th).

Visiting the Des Moines Buccaneers on Friday, Cates scored in the first minute after the second intermission, breaking a 1-1 tie. The goal stood up as decisive in Waterloo’s 2-1 victory. It was the Minnesota-Duluth recruit’s second game-winning goal during February.

Saturday, Cates recorded his second hat trick of the year, becoming only the fourth player in the USHL this season to have that distinction. The last Black Hawk with multiple hat tricks in one regular season was Brock Boeser (three in 2014/15). Cates scored in all three periods and in all three phases of the game (even-strength, power play, and shorthanded). He completed the hat trick while the Lincoln Stars were on a five-on-three power play. Waterloo now leads the league with ten shorthanded goals as a team in 2017/18.

Adding an assist on a second period goal by Ben Copeland, Cates scored or assisted on five of the seven goals the Hawks accumulated during the two-game weekend.

Cates was previously the USHL Forward of the Week on January 1st. He is the first Black Hawk to win a weekly honor twice this season. As a team, Waterloo has boasted a Forward, Defenseman, or Goaltender of the Week seven times this winter.

The Hawks are on home ice for 90s Night on Tuesday against the Sioux City Musketeers at 7:05 p.m. It’s a College Night, with $9 tickets for college students on game day. For seats, call the Domino’s Black Hawks Box Office at (319) 291-7680.

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