The Dubuque Fighting Saints kicked off the preseason with a bang as they downed Cedar Rapids 5-2 on Friday night. Robert Cronin scored two goals and added an assist to lead the charge. Mark Cheremeta scored two goals and Luke Robinson added a late tally to back a sound offensive effort from the Fighting Saints.
-Cronin, who only played one period during the Fighting Saints Main Camp, made the most of his first full game with the team. He tallied right after a third period power play expired for what would hold up as the winning goal. Cronin then added a power play goal on the doorstep and a primary assist on Robinsons goal.
-Cheremeta struck first for Dubuque, notching their first two goals of the game. Cheremeta’s first shot on goal was a heavy wrister that got a piece of the CR netminder but snuck through. His second was much of the same, from the opposite side of the ice on the power play.
-Bram Scheerer was the other Saint to record a multi-point night as he managed two assists, both primary helpers, on Cronin’s two goals. Scheerer was a late bloomer last season for Dubuque and picked up where he left off during the first preseason game.
-In net, Dubuque had two solid performances as Erik Portillo let in one goal on nine shots while Hobie Hedquist turned away 13 of 14. Hedquist made a few lunging saves in the middle of the third period to keep the lead in favor of Dubuque.
-CR generated good chances early but faded in the third period. Jack O’Leary started the scoring for the RoughRiders with a slick backhand over a sprawling Portillo. Robby Newton scored the second goal for Cedar Rapids as he slid a puck through the legs of Hedquist on the power play.
-Dubuque was 2/5 on the PP while Cedar Rapids was 1/3. Dubuque generated chances on four of their five power plays and other than Cedar Rapids power play goal, held the RoughRiders in check a man up.
-Dubuque outshot CR 34-23 as they pounced on loose pucks and generated opportunities off the rush with regularity. The Saints fired 9 of the last 10 shots on net as they gained steam towards the end of the game.
-The Fighting Saints will be right back at it against Cedar Rapids as they take on the RoughRiders tomorrow night. Dubuque will look to sweep the weekend as they play game two of the preseason.
-Dubuque’s next and final home preseason contest will be September 21st against the Green Bay Gamblers. Tickets are on sale at DubuqueFightingSaints.com or by calling 563.583.6880.