Winners of four straight, the Dubuque Fighting Saints will look to continue their success against their rivals from the Western Conference, the Waterloo Black Hawks. Dubuque and Waterloo have each won a game at home against the other this season with Waterloo winning 6-1 and Dubuque winning 4-3. Dubuque will host the Black Hawks on Friday night, before making the short trip to Young Arena on Saturday. Get set for both weekend games with an extended Weekend Primer.
-Over the past weekend, the Dubuque Fighting Saints won three games in three days for the first time since February 19th-21st of 2015-16. Dubuque beat Green Bay 3-2 in a thrilling overtime win and then held serve at home, beating Lincoln 4-2 and Madison 3-1.
-The Fighting Saints joined the Sioux Falls Stampede as the only other team this season to win three games in three days. The Fighting Saints will also end the month of March with three games in three days against Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Central Illinois
-Dubuque’s Friday game is the final home game of January for the squad. The remaining three games will be played on the road in Waterloo and Madison. The Fighting Saints have a better road record, but they have now won three straight home games and continue to gain momentum at Mystique Community Ice Center.
-The last game Dubuque played against Waterloo, on November 3rd, brought out the largest crowd of the season so far at Mystique Community Ice Center. 2,772 packed the stands for a playoff-like game.
-Matias Maccelli recorded his second six-point weekend of the season with three points against Green Bay, two against Lincoln and one against Madison. Maccelli also secured six points over the final weekend before the holiday break. That weekend he had three two-point games.
-Waterloo will play their 20th road game of the season on Friday against the Fighting Saints. That will give Waterloo the second most road games this season in the USHL up to this point. The Black Hawks have 22 points on the road this season and are currently on a two-game losing streak on the road.
-The matchup between the two teams will feature two of the four best power plays in the USHL. Waterloo is currently first at 28.9% and the Dubuque Fighting Saints sit fourth at 22.5%. At home, Waterloo is above 30% and Dubuque is up above 24%.
-Dubuque is one of three teams this season with eight players totaling 20 points or more. The Fighting Saints, Central Illinois Flying Aces and Sioux Falls Stampede all have eight players with that total. Dubuque has relied on the depth of their lineup all season.
-Waterloo rolls in to town with the second highest scoring offense in the USHL. They sit tied with Des Moines at 129 goals scored this season. The Black Hawks are the only team in the league with three players at 15 goals or more.
-The Black Hawks are also one of two teams this season with four players at a point per game or better. The Muskegon Lumberjacks, the top team in the east, also have four players with over a point per game.
-Matej Blumel, Emil Ohrval and Vladislav Firstov are all in the top 12 in scoring for the 2018-19 season. Waterloo is the only team this season with three players in the top 12. Firstov leads the league in rookie scoring and Blumel is first in goals.
-Not only are the Black Hawks potent on the power play, they are also very good shorthanded. Waterloo has seven shorthanded goals, which puts them second in the USHL. With 48 special teams tallies, they have six more goals in that department than any other team in the league.
-The Fighting Saints have dominated the Western Conference this season. They are 7-3-1-1 against foes from the west. The three regulation loses have come to Waterloo, Fargo and Des Moines. Dubuque has beaten Omaha and Lincoln twice, Sioux Falls and Sioux City once and Waterloo once as well.
-The Fighting Saints have nine games remaining against the Western Conference this season. If the Saints win just three of the remaining nine, they will have their most wins in a season over the West since 2015-16.