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Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Stars rout Ducks, 6-2

By Mark Stepneski

The Dallas Stars won their first game out of the All Star break, routing the Anaheim Ducks 6-2 at Honda Center Wednesday night. The victory pulled the Stars to within one point of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

Jamie Benn and Michael Ryder each had one goal and two assists. Eric Nystrom, Vernon Fiddler, Stephane Robidas and Sheldon Souray also scored goals. Steve Ott and Alex Goligoski each had two assists. Kari Lehtonen stopped 33 of 35 shots.

The Stars were 1-3 on the power play and were 4-4 on the penalty kill.

First period

The Ducks opened the scoring 5:14 into the game when a Matt Beleskey shot from the blue line deflected off traffic and got by Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen.

But the Stars scored three goals in a 3:54 span late in the period to build a 3-1 lead.

Eric Nystrom scored off the rebound of an Alex Goligoski shot from the left point to tie the game at the 13:56 mark.

Vernon Fiddler scored off the rush, slipping by Ducks defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky and then beat goaltender Jonas Hiller five-hole to give the Stars a 2-1 lead at the 16:41 mark.

Just 1:09 later the Ducks turned the puck over in the neutral zone, Steve Ott set up Jamie Benn on a breakaway and Benn roofed a shot over Hiller to make it a 3-1 game.

Stars defenseman Nicklas Grossman was a late scratch due to the flu, according to a team official.

Second period

The Ducks got a power play early in the second period, but the Stars’ penalty kill was sharp and the Ducks generated little.

The Stars went on the power play seven minutes into the second when Ducks forward Corey Perry was called for slashing, and they cashed in to take a 4-1 lead.

Mike Ribeiro set up Stephane Robidas, who scored off a one-timer from just beyond the top of the right circle at the 7:14 mark.

The Ducks answered a little more than a minute later when Luca Sbisa scored on a shot from the slot off the rush to make it 4-2 at the 8:36 mark.

Both teams had power play chances later in the period, but couldn’t take advantage.

Third period

Sheldon Souray scored 36 seconds into the third period, beating Hiller with a shot from the left point to give the Stars a 5-2 lead.

Lehtonen had some sharp saves in the period and the Stars killed off the Ducks fourth power play chance of the game late in the game.

Ott set up Michael Ryder on a odd-man rush late in the game to extend the Dallas lead to 6-2.

Stars lineup

Ott-Benn-Ryder
Morrow-Ribeiro-Eriksson
Nystrom-Fiddler-Dvorak
Dowell-Wandell-Burish

Souray-Robidas
Fistric-Daley
Goligoski-Larsen

Lehtonen (starter)
Bachman

Injured: Grossman (flu)
Scratched: Pardy, Petersen