Matthew Thiessen was a brick wall, Matias Maccelli scored twice, and the Fighting Saints scored five times in a shutout win over the Chicago Steel. Dubuque swept the weekend, beating Cedar Rapids and Chicago en route to four points. Dubuque faced two opponents that they could play in the first round of the playoffs and beat both. With the win the Saints split the season series with Chicago.
-Matthew Thiessen recorded his first USHL shutout in spectacular fashion. The Saints net minder made 44 saves, including 19 in the second period and he shutout the Steel. Thiessen was on from the start of the game and made multiple highlight reel saves for the Saints.
-Matias Maccelli scored twice for Dubuque, including his third shorthanded goal of the season. Maccelli now has 71 points this season, putting him fourth on the Tier-1 list for points in a single season on the Fighting Saints scoring list. Maccelli passed Zach Solow, who was the USHL player of the year two seasons ago.
-The Saints started the game hot. Cooper Haar scored just 22 seconds in to ignite the home crowd. Dubuque was off and running and never trailed. The Saints won when scoring first, the first time that happened in the season series with Chicago.
-Chicago might have played their best game of the season against Dubuque, but they ran in to a hot goalie. Chicago was the better team in the second, despite Dubuque scoring twice. The 19 shots for the Steel were the most the Saints have faced in a period this season.
-With the Saturday night win, the Saints grabbed their first Friday, Saturday sweep since mid-January. The Saints have struggled in the second half of back to backs but tonight that was not the case. Dubuque was opportunistic and Thiessen was superb.
-Chicago is now just one point ahead of the Youngstown Phantoms for second place in the Eastern Conference. Cedar Rapids also won meaning they remain a point back as well. The second-place seed is completely up in the air and Dubuque will still play one of the three teams mentioned above.
-Dubuque’s 5-0 win was their second highest margin of victory this season. Both of their shutouts have come in the last three weeks and both have been blowouts. Aaron Randazzo benefitted from six goals when he shutout the Madison Capitols.
-Dubuque mathematically still has a chance to finish in fifth. If they win out and Team USA loses their last three games in regulation, the Saints would climb up to the fifth-seed by virtue of the tiebreaker. Dubuque faces Waterloo twice next weekend in a home and home against the Black Hawks who will be fighting for a first round bye in the Western Conference.