Sometimes a team just has your number. You can be good against a good team and sometimes you can be bad against a not so good team. Last year Texas had misfortune against Peoria, a non-playoff team, while lording over the IceHogs, a playoff squad. This year, Texas is having a bit of trouble with the Aeros.
The trouble started for the Stars in the first period with Houston scoring the first goal. The first came from Nate Prosser on a goal scored from the point. The puck never left the ground and simply made its way through traffic to beat Bachman on the left side of the net. The power play tally was Prosser's 3rd of the year. Texas was vastly outshot in the first 16-5 and was lucky to come out with only a 1-0 deficit.
Houston struck again in the second period off a bad Texas change. Coming off a 4-on-4, Texas got caught with their fourth man changing behind the play. As Houston surged forward, the fifth man coming out of the box jumped into the play, creating a 5-on-3, effectively. Colton Gillies tallied his 3rd of the year on the play. "It was pretty rough at the start of the game," said forward Ray Sawada. "We weren't executing our passes, plays or power play."
Texas turned it around after the halfway point of the second, collecting a power play goal from Travis Morin with 3:24 left in the period to cut the lead to 2-1 for the end of the period.
Texas came out for the third period on fire and Colton Sceviour scored his third goal of the year falling down. Severin Blindenbacher collected the primary assists, his second of the night. In short order thereafter, Texas coughed up the puck in their own zone and former Star Warren Peters made good on the turnover. The 3-2 score took the air out of the building.
The building got set on fire again when Cody Chupp scored his second of the year on a nice centering pass from linemate Sean Backman. The 3-3 tie would persist into overtime.
Just 50 seconds into the overtime period, Texas's Fabian Brunnstrom got called in the crease for a high stick. "It was a little bit of a questionable call, especially in overtime," commented Sawada. Houston scored at the end of the power play to seal the deal and gain the extra standings point.
Texas had seven power play opportunities in the game and only scored on one of them. Meanwhile, Texas had only three PK opportunities, including the overtime minor, and allowed 2 power play goals against. Special teams, which had been humming at home, need to improve if Texas wants to maintain their success when they head out on the road next week.
Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Benn and McCulloch (scratched)
Krahn (day-to-day, lower body)
Gagnon, Larsen (call-up)
Lines were mostly unchanged from last night. Tousignant started with Roman and Vincour but then shifted back to his usual lineup spot for the rest of the game.
Tonight's attendance was 5,009.
AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Houston - December 4 2010