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Chicago Cougars Premier Roar to Victory: Paulauskas' Hat-Trick Dominates Blaze in 7-0 Triumph


#8 Forward Gerdas Paulauskas | Photo by Beverly Buchinger
#8 Forward Gerdas Paulauskas | Photo by Beverly Buchinger

BENSENVILLE, Ill.- In a dazzling display at the Edge Ice Arena, the Chicago Cougars Premier unit asserted their dominance over divisional rivals, the Decatur Blaze, with a convincing 7-0 victory. The storyline of the night belonged to Gerdas Paulauskas, who orchestrated a stellar hat-trick, leaving the Decatur Blaze defense in disarray. Sam Burcal, guarding the net for the Cougars, stood tall with a flawless shutout performance, making 27 saves and denying any hope for the Blaze. The Chicago Cougars showcased not only their offensive flair but also their defensive resilience, making a significant statement in the Midwest East Division of the USPHL.


Cougars pounce into action | Photo by Beverly Buchinger
Cougars pounce into action | Photo by Beverly Buchinger

The Chicago Cougars kicked off the game with an explosive first period, dominating the Decatur Blaze to establish a commanding 3-0 lead. Gerdas Paulauskas led the charge with two goals, while Connor Schuckmann added another, leaving the Blaze struggling to keep pace.


#8 Forward Gerdas Paulauskas celebrates 1 of 3 goals | Photo by Beverly Buchinger
#8 Forward Gerdas Paulauskas celebrates 1 of 3 goals | Photo by Beverly Buchinger

Gerdas Paulauskas continued his scoring spree, completing a hat-trick in the second period, extending the Cougars' lead to 4-0. The Cougars maintained their offensive pressure, leaving the Decatur Blaze with a formidable deficit and no answers to Paulauskas' scoring.


#97 Forward Coler Crozier parks in front of the net while on the Power Play | Photo by Beverly Buchinger
#97 Forward Coler Crozier parks in front of the net while on the Power Play | Photo by Beverly Buchinger

The third period saw the Cougars capitalize on power-play opportunities, with Coler Crozier and Kristian Boweak finding the back of the net. The Cougars' power-play unit showcased precision, securing a convincing 7-0 victory over the Decatur Blaze. The period headlines highlighted the Cougars' special teams excellence.


Chicago Cougars Stars of the Game:


#33 Goalie Sam Burcal | Photo by Beverly Buchinger
#33 Goalie Sam Burcal | Photo by Beverly Buchinger

1. Gerdas Paulauskas: Paulauskas stole the spotlight with a remarkable hat-trick, showcasing his scoring prowess and leading the Cougars to a dominating victory.


2. Sam Burcal: Burcal's stellar performance between the pipes earned him a shutout, making 27 crucial saves and denying the Decatur Blaze any chance of a comeback.


3. Cooper Brackett: Brackett played a key role in the Cougars' offensive outburst, contributing two assists and providing crucial support on both ends of the ice.


The Chicago Cougars' dominant performance over the Decatur Blaze cements their position as a potent force in the USPHL, with their offensive talents, solid goaltending, and special teams excellence on full display.


Next up the Chicago Cougars Premier squad hits the road to Michigan as they set their sites on the Battle Creek Kernels! Cougars fans won't want to miss a moment of the live action on FloHockey.tv.  Stay tuned as they clash with the Battle Creek Kernels in what promises to be an intense and captivating series this Friday & Saturday!

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