Posted 287 days ago ago by David Fine
Ralston, Neb. – The Tri-City Storm used balanced scoring to complete a perfect Fall Classic, defeating the Waterloo Black Hawks, 5-2, Saturday at Ralston Arena’s Auxiliary Rink. The Storm won all three of its preseason tournament games in Ralston. Five players – Paul Washe, Wyatt Bongiovanni, Charlie Kelleher, Philip Alftberg and Joe Cipollone scored for the Storm.
The victory technically wraps up a 4-0 preseason for Tri-City. The Storm played two scrimmages against Des Moines last weekend, but those games were not played in a 60-minute format. In the four other games, Tri-City outscored opponents, 21-7.
Kelleher dominated preseason opponents, scoring three goals and seven points in four preseason games. Another new forward, Linus Weissbach, finished second on the Storm with six points (1g, 5a).
The Storm opens the regular season on September 23 at Lincoln before its home opener, Championship Night, on September 30 vs. Sioux City.
Returning Storm forward Paul Washe scored the Storm’s first goal, assisted by Charlie Kelleher, at 6:11 of the opening frame. Kelleher ticked the puck off his stick to the left circle for Washe. The 17-year-old fired a wrist shot to the short side and past Viksten.
Next, with 9:47 left in the first, Wyatt Bongiovanni dove and stashed the puck from the left post and in. Carson Vance and Philip Alftberg assisted on the power-play marker. Tri-City went two-for-five on the man up.
Tri-City’s Mareks Mitens played the first half of the game and made 13 saves. David Tomeo relieved with six saves. The 17-year-old yielded a goal with 4:26 left in the second to Waterloo’s Logan Jenuwine.
Charlie Kelleher racked up his third of the Fall Classic off a beautiful feed from Alex Limoges. With one minute left in the second, Limoges held the puck at the right post and waited for the netminder to sprawl. After Viksten was out of position, Kelleher snuck to the slot and powered home a one-timed slap shot.
Philip Alftberg scored with 7:54 left by zinging a slap shot through traffic and in at 3:47 of the third. To finish the Storm’s scoring, Joe Cipollone rolled the puck into the empty net with 11 seconds left.
With the preseason schedule over, the Storm prepares for the 60-game USHL regular season, which starts on Friday, September 23 at Lincoln. Listen to all Storm games on The Breeze 94.5 FM.
Coming off a 2016 Clark Cup Championship, Tri-City kicks off the home schedule with Championship Night on September 30 at 7:05 p.m. vs. Sioux City.
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The Storm will raise its Clark Cup Championship Banner and give away a special championship pennant to the first 1,000 fans. Presented by Viaero Wireless, Championship night will include a pregame ceremony to honor last season’s championship team as well as tributes throughout the night.
Call the Viaero Center Box Office at 308-338-8011 for more information.