Stars Beat Canucks

By Monte Stewart, The Sports Xchange

VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Tyler Seguin wanted to see more pride from his team Thursday night — and he did.
Seguin also displayed some pride of his own, scoring the winning goal to lead the Stars to a 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday night.
The Stars (28-32-10) posted their first win in five games after Seguin called for his team to show more pride following a one-sided loss in Edmonton and a poor effort in San Jose.
“I thought the guys did a great job responding,” Seguin said. “Our compete level was a lot higher, just our will throughout the game. We were missing it the last few games, and it was obviously nice to respond tonight and, hopefully, build a little foundation for the rest of the way.”
The Stars prevailed in a battle of struggling clubs that will likely miss the Stanley Cup playoffs. Seguin and Radek Faksa scored in the third period to propel the Stars. First, Seguin gave the Stars a 3-2 lead at 9:07 of the final frame as he fired in a slapshot during a power play.
“They had a power play goal and we responded in the third,” Seguin said. “I thought it was a great screen in front and I’m happy it went in. I thought we did a great job on the power play. The guys were moving and (there was) a lot more chatter than the last few games on the power play. Even during the play, a lot of guys (were) yelling more and figuring out where to go.”
Faksa provided an insurance marker just over six minutes later after a giveaway by Canucks defenseman Troy Stecher near his team’s net.
The Canucks (28-33-9) lost their fifth straight game, with all of the losses coming in a five-game homestand. The Stars improved to 12-0-1 in their past 13 games against Vancouver — and also moved ahead of the Canucks into 11th place in the Western Conference.
“I thought, early, we were okay,” Canucks coach Willie Desjardins said. “We battled pretty good. When we got on the forecheck and that, I thought we were pretty successful. But at the same time, they’re a pretty quick team. I thought we could get on their D in the third period, and we didn’t.”
Ales Hemsky and Esa Lindell scored first-period goals for the Stars with Hemksy’s his first of the season after missing most of it following hip surgery.
Sven Baertschi and Ben Hutton scored for the Canucks as coach Willie Desjardins began a commitment to give more ice time to young players during the stretch drive of the season.
Vancouver goaltender Ryan Miller posted 32 saves while Dallas counterpart Kari Lehtonen made 26 as the Stars outshot the Canucks 36-28.
“I think it was a step in the right direction,” Lehtonen said. “We’ve had a couple of really rough ones, but we came to play tonight. Especially in the last half of the game, I think we played really good and didn’t give them much.”
Vancouver received a four-minute power play 3:01 into the game after former Canuck Adam Cracknell cut Henrik Sedin with a high stick. But the Canucks could not score against the worst penalty-killing unit in the league.
“We got that four-minute penalty there so, right way, that kept me really in the rhythm,” Lehtonen said. “It’s always great if that happens and they don’t score. You get everything going and you get warmed up.”
Hutton created a 2-2 tie on a power play with 1.9 seconds left in the middle frame. He picked up a loose puck during a scramble and swept it around a fallen Lehtonen. The goal was only the Canucks’ second in their last 34 man-advantage opportunities.
It came after Lindell gave the Stars a 2-1 lead with only 7.2 seconds left in the first as his shot went in off Miller.
“I probably wasn’t as sharp as I’d like to be early — made a couple poor decisions — but after that I thought we were playing pretty well in the second,” said Canucks goaltender Miller. “I was able to settle down a bit. It just got away from us towards the end there.”

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