Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Stars fall 4-1 to Oilers
By Mark Stepneski
The Dallas Stars didn’t get off to a stellar start on their road trip to Western Canada. The Stars lost 4-1 to the Edmonton Oilers. It was the sixth loss in the last seven games for the Stars (1-5-1) and their eighth in the last ten (2-7-1). It was also their fifth straight loss on the road. Loui Eriksson scored the lone goal for Dallas. Kari Lehtonen made 26 saves. Dallas played without five regular players, including leading scorer Brad Richards. The Oilers snapped a seven-game winless streak at home and scored two power play goals, ending a seven-game power play drought.
“With the exception of our goalie tonight, there wasn’t a whole lot of desperation. They were the hungrier team. They won more races to pucks. They created some power plays with their good speed.” – Stars captain Brenden Morrow.
“It’s very frustrating. I don’t think we played at the level we can. It’s easy to say we have lots of guys hurt, but we are a better team than we’ve shown the last couple weeks.” – Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen
*The Stars have been outscored 27-10 during their five-game road losing streak.
*The Stars scored one goal in a game for the fifth time in their last nine games overall.
*The Stars have not scored an even strength in the last two games.
*The Stars allowed two or more power play goals in a game for the fourth time in the last nine games.
*The Stars are 25-37 (67.6%) on the penalty kill over the last ten games.
*Kari Lehtonen picked up his fifth assist of the season, tying Ed Belfour and Marty Turco for the franchise record for most assists by a goaltender in a season.
Jordan Eberle scored the lone goal of the period, tallying just after an Edmonton power play had expired. Sam Gagner made a slick move along the Dallas goal line and then backhanded the puck to Eberle, who put the puck past Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen with 1:58 left in the period.
The Star had some good chances in the period but Oilers goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin was sharp, making excellent saves on Loui Eriksson, Brenden Morrow and Tomas Vincour.
The Oilers extended their lead to 2-0 with a power play goal at the 7:40 mark of the second period. Shawn Horcoff sent a cross-ice to pass to Taylor Chorney, who scored off a one-timer from the right circle.
The Stars cut the lead to 2-1 by cashing in on their first power play chance late in the period. Jason Williams, playing the point on the power play with Brad Richards out of the lineup, set up Loui Eriksson on a breakaway and Eriksson beat Nikolai Khabibulin with a backhand shot with 3:29 left in the period.
Just ten seconds later the Oilers went on a power play and they scored to get their two-goal lead back. Ales Hemsky set up a backdoor goal by Horcoff with just 1:50 left in the period to make it 3-1 Oilers heading into the second intermission.
The Oilers made a it a 4-1 game just 28 seconds into the third period. Horcoff sent a pass to Hemsky, who split the Dallas defense and then slipped the puck past Lehtonen with a backhand shot.
The Stars had two power play chances In the period, but couldn’t cut into the Edmonton lead.
Injured: Richards (upper body), Grossman (hip), Burish (orbital bone), Barch (orbital bone), Benn (shoulder), Sawada (shoulder)
Power play units
Penalty kill units