The Steel Deal: After Loss on Friday, Chicago Tops Dubuque on Saturday


The Chicago Steel split their weekend games, losing 4–3 to the Youngstown Phantoms, on Friday, then bounced back to defeat the Dubuque Fighting Saints 3–2. Forward Robert Mastrosimone scored three times on the weekend to pace the Steel.

Youngstown 4, Chicago 3

On Friday, Chicago jumped on the scoreboard first, as Mastrosimone scored his 25th goal of the season at the 1:13 mark of the first period. The goal, assisted by defenseman Uula Ruikka and forward Jake Schmaltz, kept the Boston University commit atop the Steel goal scoring lead.

Chicago took the 1–0 lead into the first intermission, outshooting Youngstown 8–7 in the hard-fought first period.

The Phantoms jumped to a 2–1 lead with back-to-back goals by Craig Needham and Jack Malone, the second goal coming at the 5:50 mark of the second period, which seemed to put the Steel on their heels for a few shifts.

Mastrosimone scored his second goal of the game, and 26th of the season, when he finished off the rebound from a shot by defenseman John Spetz. The goal, also assisted by forward Mathieu De St. Phalle, was the only power play goal scored in the game.

Forward Nick Abruzzese put the Steel on the board first in the third period, giving Chicago the 3–2 lead. The goal, scored at the 3:42 mark, was assisted by defensemen Owen Power and Luke Reid.

That would be the last goal for the Steel. Youngstown tied the game, at the 10:29 mark of the third period, when Malone scored his second goal of the game, after a nice stretch pass from forward Matthew Barnaby, who beat Steel goaltender Justin Robbins five-hole.

Phantoms’ defenseman Aiden Gallacher scored his first goal of the season, at the 15:38 mark, to give Youngstown the lead, and ultimately the victory, 4–3.

Chicago outshot Youngstown 29–22 but could not tie the game with Robbins pulled for the extra attacker.

Chicago 3, Dubuque 2

The great news about USHL hockey, after dropping a hard-fought game on Friday, the Steel could not sit back and think about the loss, as they hosted the Fighting Saints the next evening. Dubuque would jump out to a 1–0 lead, however, Chicago came racing back with three straight goals, and held off a late push by Dubuque, giving Chicago the 3–2 victory and a much needed two points in the standings.

Dubuque took the lead, at the 3:47 mark in the first period, when right winger Riese Gaber scored his 19th goal of the season, beating Steel goaltender Reilly Herbst.

The score would remain 1–0 until Mastrosimone tied the game on an unassisted goal midway through the second period. Mastrosimone stole the puck along the left boards and buried a wrist shot blocker side.

Chicago would score a late goal in the second period, when Matteo Pietroniro buried his 17th goal of the season. The captain’s goal was assisted by forward Adam Robbins.

After two period of play, Chicago lead 2–1 while outshooting Dubuque 12–11. The offensive push would not be much better in the third period, as Dubuque fired a total of six shots on net, besting the Steel by one shot.

One of Chicago’s five shots did find the back of the net when forward Josh Groll beat Dubuque goaltender Matthew Thiessen, a Vancouver Canuck draft pick, to extend the Chicago lead to 3–1.

Dubuque forward Matias Maccelli scored for the Fighting Saints to bring the visitors to within a goal midway through the third period, but could not beat the Steel defense for the game-tying goal.

Chicago walked away with the 3–2 victory, in a game with 34 shots total, and one penalty called in the game. Herbst stopped 15 shots for the victory.

With the victory, Chicago kept control of the second spot in the Eastern Conference, a race that has seen the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders and Youngstown Phantoms creep into.

Chicago will be back in action this week for three games. Chicago plays in Green Bay on Tuesday, March 19 and Friday, March 22. Both games start at 7:05 p.m. The Steel then return home, on Sunday March 24, for “Daddy Daughter Princess Day” for a 3:05 p.m. puck drop, at Fox Valley Ice Arena. Fans can also enjoy a post-game “Skate with the Steel.”

Center Ice Forums The Steel Deal: After Loss on Friday, Chicago Tops Dubuque on Saturday

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    Ray Napientek

    The Chicago Steel split their weekend games, losing 4–3 to the Youngstown Phantoms, on Friday, then bounced back to defeat the Dubuque Fighting Saints
    [To continue reading full article, click here: The Steel Deal: After Loss on Friday, Chicago Tops Dubuque on Saturday]

    Mister Ricochet

    Nice work, Ray……… Youngstown beat Madison on Sunday while Cedar Rapids and Chicago were off so the Phantoms are now in 2nd place 1 point ahead of CHI and CR although the Riders and Steel have a game in hand.

    Fun weekend as the Steel played two 1 goal games vs inter-conference clubs they are battling for seeding.  …. Mastrosimone is so fun to watch play his 3 zone game.  3 of the Steel’s 7 goals on the weekend the kid is stepping up when needed.

    Don’t think coach Moore has had the same lineup two games in a row for months.  As a first yr coach will be interested to see if he uses this “strategy” come playoff time.

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