MUSKEGON, MI – Entering Friday’s match-up at L.C. Walker Arena, the Waterloo Black Hawks had not lost a game when leading by multiple goals.
Danil Gushchin changed that.
A four-goal performance by Gushchin led the Muskegon Lumberjacks to a 4-3 overtime win over the Black Hawks.
Muskegon (7-4), 14 points, extends its win streak to seven straight games, while Waterloo (7-2-1), 15 points, drops back-to-back games for the first time this season.
Lumberjacks 4 - Black Hawks 3 (OT)
Muskegon opened Friday night’s contest with a 1-0 lead in the opening period, on Gushchin’s first goal of the night.
Guschin, 17, beat Black Hawks goaltender Gabriel Carriere under his blocker to deposit his fifth goal of the season.
Entering the second period with a 1-0 advantage, the Black Hawks bookended the middle frame with a pair of goals to take a 2-1 lead after two periods. Waterloo tied the game 17 seconds into the frame on a Patrick Guzzo rebound goal, beating Muskegon netminder Noah Giesbrecht blocker-side.
With six seconds remaining in the second, Ryder Rolston cashed in on a one-timer at the bottom of the left circle, beating a sprawling Giesbrecht.
The goal for Rolston was his fifth in his last four games.
In the third, the Black Hawks found more offense from one of its top scorers. Connor Caponi, the team leader in points deposited his fifth goal of the season off a rebound that deflected off Giesbrecht’s right pad to give Waterloo a 3-1 lead.
With less than three minutes remaining in the third, Muskegon pulled Giesbrecht in favor of a sixth skater, and Gushchin netted his second goal of the night with a backdoor wrister that rolled past Carriere to cut the Waterloo lead 3-2.
Still with an extra attacker, Muskegon found the back of the net on Gushchin’s third goal of the night with five seconds left in the game on a scramble in front of the net to tie the game 3-3.
In overtime, Gushchin scored his USHL-leading fourth game-winning goal after David Gucciardi flipped the puck into the attacking zone, Gushchin deked past a defender and slipped the puck past Carriere’s pad to secure the win for Muskegon, 4-3.
The Lumberjacks are the only team to have multiple players record four goals in a game (Oliver MacDonald).
Game two of Muskegon’s five-game homestand begins Saturday at 7:05 PM against the Youngstown Phantoms at L.C. Walker Arena.
Saturday’s game is Marvel Night. Fans are encouraged to dress up and meet their favorite Marvel heroes.
You can order tickets online through muskegonlumberjacks.com, in person at the L.C. Walker Arena Box Office, or by phone through 231-726-2400.
For season or group ticket packages, call 231-799-7000.