CEDAR RAPIDS — Thirty-seven seconds into their United States Hockey League game Saturday night, it was apparent the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders still have a Dubuque problem.
That was when Dubuque center Chayse Primeau scored his ninth goal of the season as the RoughRiders lost to the Fighting Saints for the 12th time in 14 games, 3-0, before 3,573 fans at the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena.
“Dubuque is a real strong club,” Cedar Rapids Coach Mark Carlson said. “We didn’t come out ready to play in the first period. I thought that was a major factor, so we’ve got some work to do.”
Only twice in the last 12 losses to Dubuque have the RoughRiders scored more than two goals, both this season. Cedar Rapids’ current ills stretch further than Dubuque. The RoughRiders (12-13-6) have lost five in a row overall, including a pair of overtime tilts.
Dubuque center Jan Kern posted his sixth goal of the season with 7:01 left in the second period.
The Fighting Saints’ defense not only notched their second shutout in two nights and third with three different goalkeepers this season, they bottled up red-hot Cedar Rapids center Marc McLaughlin. McLaughlin tallied two goals and three assists Friday against Team USA and has recorded six goals and eight assists in his last eight games before Saturday night.
“They play strong defense,” Carlson said. “It was more of a team effort on their part.”
Cedar Rapids was 0-for-4 in power-play opportunities.
Dubuque (16-11-4) added an empty-net goal from left wing Scott Corbett — his third this season — with 22 seconds left in the game.
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Right defenseman Josh Maniscalco distributed two assists, while left defensemen Jacob Semik and Brendan Bushy, plus right wing Quinn Preston were all credited with one for the Fighting Saints.
The RoughRiders visit Des Moines Sunday at 5:05 for the first of three road games before returning to the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena against Dubuque on Feb. 2.
“We take things day by day,” Carlson said. “So we’ll focus tomorrow on Des Moines and get ready to go.”
AT CEDAR RAPIDS ICE ARENA
Dubuque Fighting Saints 3, Cedar Rapids RoughRiders 0
Dubuque 1 1 1—3
Cedar Rapids 0 0 0—0
Scoring — Dubuque: Chayse Primeau (Quinn Preston, Brendan Bushy), 0:37.
Scoring — Dubuque: Jan Kern (Josh Maniscalco, Jacob Semik), 12:59.
Scoring — Dubuque: Scott Corbett (Josh Maniscalco), 19:38.
Shots on goal — Dubuque 36, Cedar Rapids 32.
Power-play opportunities — Dubuque 0 for 4, Cedar Rapids 0 for 4.
Goalkeepers — Dubuque: James Durham (32 saves); Cedar Rapids: Blake Pietila (33 saves).
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