The Waterloo Black Hawks won their first shootout in 20 months, prevailing in the final game before Christmas, 4-3 over the Youngstown Phantoms at the Covelli Center on December 19, 2015.

Ronnie Hein scored Waterloo’s first shootout goal of the season, low to the stick side of Colin DeAugustine, on the Hawks’ first attempt. Michael Davies delivered the winner with a shot to the same place in the third round. In between, Alex Esposito converted a chance for the Phantoms, but Drew Hotte made two other stops after 16 saves in regulation and overtime. Waterloo’s last shootout win was a 3-2 decision in the final game of the 2013/14 season against the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders.

Mason Anderson made the overtime and shootout possible, clearing the puck off the goal line in the waning seconds of regulation. Thus the third period, as well as the overtime, was scoreless.

The Hawks had taken their first lead of the weekend 7:42 into the first period. Shane Bowers won a faceoff and setup a shot by Davies from the left point. On its way to the net, the puck off a Youngstown defender. Less than a minute later, the Phantoms evened the count when Matt Alvaro scored on a rebound.

Waterloo surged in front during the opening shifts of the second and held Youngstown without a shot on goal until almost the midpoint of the period. Just 30 seconds after intermission, Hein tapped a loose puck into the net. Forty-five seconds later, Nick Swaney capitalized on a shot from the left wing circle.

However, Youngstown capitalized when James Winkler scored on a power play rebound at 10:58 of the period. Waterloo held off the opposition during 1:26 of two-man advantage time, but ultimately conceded the game-tying goal shorthanded with 32.1 seconds left before intermission. Kris Myllari was the trailing skater on an odd-man rush and blasted the equalizer under the crossbar.

The Hawks are now off through Christmas weekend, returning to the ice on December 29th to visit the Lincoln Stars. Waterloo’s next home game is against the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders on New Year’s Eve; tickets are currently available online from waterlooblackhawks.com.