The Waterloo Black Hawks traveled to Kearney, NE for Game 1 of the USHL Western Conference Finals. The Storm opened the best-of-five series on a strong note.

Jake Kielly stopped all 32 Waterloo Black Hawks shots on Friday during a 4-0 Tri-City Storm playoff win at Viaero Center in Kearney, Nebraska.

The Storm successfully protected home ice during Game One of the best-of-five Clark Cup second round series. The shutout was Kielly’s second of the playoffs; he blanked the Sioux Falls Stampede by the same score during Game One in the first round.

The Hawks had the first seven chances on net during the game and outshot the Storm 15-9 in the opening period. However, the first 20 minutes turned on a Tri-City power play. The Storm cashed in with their first shot on goal of the night at 9:26, a stuff attempt by Carson Meyer, set up by Jake Wahlin’s cross-slot pass originating from the top of the left circle. Exactly six minutes later, Nico Strum received a pass near where Wahlin had been previously on left wing, snapping a one-timer from there under the crossbar. The opportunity was generated thanks to a Brandon Duhaime feed from the corner.

Cale Morris stood on his head during the second period, making 23 saves to keep the Black Hawks within two goals. His best stops were made one-on-one against Wade Allison, once with the glove and once with his left pad. The second of those chances came with 7.3 seconds left before intermission.

Morris finished the night with 39 saves, including nine in the third period, but the Storm added two empty net goals in the final minute to seal the outcome. With 34.9 seconds remaining, Dan Labosky recovered an errant shot off the end wall and knocked it in. Then with three seconds left, Walker Duehr knocked in his opportunity from the slot.

The Hawks and Storm meet again for Game Two in Kearney Saturday at 7:05 PM.

Contributed By: Tim Harwood

GOALS BY PERIOD
          1  2  3  -  T
Waterloo  0  0  0  -  0
Tri-City  2  0  2  -  4 - Final
 (Tri-City leads best-of-5, 1-0)