Early goals spell disaster for the Waterloo Black Hawks in the winner-take-all Game 5 USHL Western Conference Finals.

The Tri-City Storm jumped out to the early lead when Max Humitz put the puck into the back of the net 1:37 into the opening frame. The Waterloo Black Hawks answered with two goals to close out the first period. Liam Pecararo netted a power play goal (9:01), and Collin Saccoman put the Black Hawks at 12:06 into the first.

The second period opened with Waterloo leading 2-1, but the Storm once again drew early blood in beginning of a period. Wade Allison scored just 0:48 into the second. Tri-City's Brandon Duhaime stole the puck during a Black Hawks power play and put the Storm up 3-2 at the 3:59 mark.

When the third period got underway, Tri-City held a 3-2 lead, and for a third time, the Storm scored right away to start a period. Just 0:17 into the start of the third period, Jake Wahlin put the Storms up 4-2.

Waterloo final put the puck into the net late in the third. At 17:47 Michael Davis pulled the Black Hawks within one goal. Jake Wahlin score an empty net goal for Tri-City to secure the birth to the USHL Clark Cup Finals.

The final score was 5-3 in favor of the Tri-City Storm. They will now face the Dubuque Fighting Saints for the USHL Clark Cup championship.

The Hawks’ 2016 postseason effort represented the seventh time in 13 seasons under Head Coach P.K. O’Handley that Waterloo has won four or more playoff games.

          1  2  3  -  T
Waterloo  2  0  1  -  3
Tri-City  1  2  2  -  5 - Final
 ^ Tri-City Wins Series, 3-2