DUBUQUE, IA—After opening the season with a pair of losses on the road, home ice was just what the Dubuque Fighting Saints needed. Brett Boeing had a hat trick as the Fighting Saints earned their first win over the season, dominating the Omaha Lancers, 7-1, on Opening Night presented by American Trust. The Fighting Saints also got goals from Zack Zulkanycz, Gordie Green, Shane Kavanagh and Mitchell Smith.
Saturday’s game saw both the Lancers and Fighting Saints, two of the top teams in the USHL Power Rankings, battling for their first victory. The physical tone was set early and an early goal for the Fighting Saints elated the crowd of 2,302 at the Mystique Community Ice Center. Kavanagh and Zulkanycz brought the puck up ice on a 2-on-1. The pass was deflected to the corner, but ricocheted back to Zulkanycz. He banked a bad angle shot in off the body of goalie Hayden Hawkey to make it 1-0 Fighting Saints only 45 seconds into the game.
Dubuque would double its lead minutes later on a breakaway goal by Green. Sasha Larocque made a beautiful pass that split the defense and sprung Green in alone. He fought a defender off his back and slid the puck to his forehand, chipping a shot under Hawkey to make it 2-0 at the 10:00 mark.
Boeing scored his first of three goals at 17:31 of the opening frame. William Lagesson and Nathan Sucese assisted, as Boeing snapped a wrist shot from the top of the faceoff circle from the left side to make it 3-0 Dubuque.
Steven Spinner would answer on the powerplay for Omaha with under 20 seconds to play in the 1st period. He accepted a pass from Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson and walked into the slot, firing a backhander under the arm of Dubuque goaltender Nehama to make it 3-1 at 19:41.
Boeing opened the 2nd Period with his second goal, scoring from Seamus Malone at 8:03. Malone made the play happen, driving wide into the offensive zone and delaying, firing a cross ice pass to Boeing who snapped a shot off the post and in, past Kris Oldman, who replaced Hawkey to start the 2nd Period.
Kavanagh added to the Fighting Saints lead at 9:18 with an unassisted goal. Omaha turned the puck over in front of their goal and Kavanagh fired a shot over Oldham’s blocker to make it 5-1. Kavanagh finished the night with a goal and two assists.
Smith scored for Dubuque in the 3rd period at the 12:00 mark to make it 6-1, and Boeing completed the hat trick three minutes later. Kavanagh cut in on goal on a partial break, cutting across the crease and firing a shot low along the ice. Oldham made the save with his pads, but lost track of the puck. As Oldham turned to try and located the puck, Boeing used the opportunity to find the lose puck and convert for the Fighting Saints first hat trick since Frankie DiChiara scored three against Indiana on March 29, 2013.
Dubuque outshot Omaha 28-25 in the game. Nehama was strong in goal for the Fighting Saints stopping 24 shots and earning his first victory with Dubuque. The Fighting Saints improved to 1-2-0 on the season. Omaha fell to 0-2-1.
Dubuque travels to Sioux City next weekend for a game on Saturday. The club returns home for a pair of games against Youngstown on October 17 and October 18. Tickets are available by calling 563.583.6880 or online at DubuqueFightingSaints.com.